Without doubt, the expectations from Love Aaj Kal are humungous and this makes actor turned producer Saif Ali Khan anxious. He's got a lot riding on this film, which is predicted to toss him into the industry's Top 3 slot, if luck sides him. " Love Aaj Kal gives me very positive vibes. But, trust me, I don't like the number game. We should be our own competition," Saif tells me.
Love Aaj Kal has got a near perfect mixture - hot properties in Saif and Deepika Padukone, one of the finest directors in Imtiaz Ali, music that's already set hearts pacing (Pritam) and a story that's rather intriguing. But people are bound to compare it with Imtiaz's Jab We Met.
"It's an unfair comparison. Comparing the two films is like comparing two different people, even though the maker is the same. This film is an individual by itself. Why, Imtiaz even wanted to get rid of the card 'From the director of Jab We Met' in the promos, but I insisted on it," Saif reveals.
Industry watchers predict Love Aaj Kal will be Saif's biggest opener ever, the position earlier held by Race. "It's flattering, but scary. It's like, I'm throwing a party, but am scared too. What if no one shows up? It's so unpredictable these days. See how Race shocked us all, its opening was mind-boggling," he states.
Let's go back a bit. What made Saif turn producer? "The credit goes to Eros. There was a period when everyone wanted to grow and Eros said they wanted to back my decisions. So they gave me money and we agreed to make two films. Also, eventually, you do like to have a control over your films," he reasons.
Saif also gives complete credit to his producer-partner Dinesh Vijan. "I was merely an actor on the sets, while Dinesh took all production-related calls. Imtiaz too wanted me to be just the actor on his sets, so that I could concentrate. Sure, I was aware of what was going on... (pauses) Dinesh and I think very much alike and we're doing this for the love of films. I could've opted for someone more experienced and prolific, but the wavelength wouldn't have been the same," he admits.
Now that Love Aaj Kal opens this Friday, Saif and Dinesh are ready to move on to their next project – Agent Vinod. "After that I begin shooting for Race 2," he concludes.