Salman Khan who is desperately in need of a hit after quite a few films of his have successively proved to be duds at the box office, like Hello, Yuvraj, God Tussi Great Ho etc, is quite confident that his next release Wanted, produced by Boney Kapoor and directed by the ace choreographer cum actor Prabhu Deva will hit the bull"s eye at the box office.
Salman is also banking on his other releases this year- Anil Sharma"s Veer, Prem Soni"s Main Aurr Mrs Khanna in which he has been cast opposite Kareena Kapoor, and last but not the least Vipul Shah"s London Dreams, in which his co-stars are Ajay Devgan and Asin.
When I meet Salman Khan for this interview at the Hotel Leela Kempinski, the actor seems quite excited about the outcome of the film, so much so, that he tells me that though the comedy quotient in Wanted is nowhere nearer to what was there in Boney Kapoor"s No Entry, directed by Anees Bazmee, he hopes that Wanted will turn out to be a hit.
Salman also asserts that Wanted will not be just an out and out action film, but also have content as well as great visuals because for the first time, the audience will be able to see a Hindi film which has been shot in the exotic locales of Greece in places like Santorina and Rodos.
Wanted is the Hindi remake of the Tamil super hit Pokkiri as well as its Telugu remake, which also had turned out to be super hits. Both the films were directed by Prabhu Deva with Vijay in the lead. Salman confesses that it was quite tough to execute the steps for his dance numbers because he does not have a flexible rubber-like body, like that of Prabhu Deva who has not only directed the film, but also choreographed the dance numbers. “Yes. I did try to copy the steps of Prabhu Deva Sir but was shocked when I saw the final outcome, because I realized that I had taken an entirely different step."
Salman elaborates. “I would not say that the steps that I have taken in the film are great, but I would unabashedly state that the steps that I have taken are better than what I tend to do normally. In that sense, I would admit that it is better than my capacity, thanks to Prabhu Deva, though I would modestly go to the extent of telling you that I am not at all comparing myself with either Sunny Deol or for that matter Sanjubaba, as far as dancing is concerned." (Laughs)
Salman clarifies that the character of Radhe that he is playing in Wanted is quite different from the character of Radhe Mohan that he had played in Tere Naam, which also was the remake of a Tamil hit called Sethu. “I played the role that Vikram had played in Sethu when it was remake in Hindi as Tere Naam. In Wanted, I have essayed the character of Radhe Mohan that Vijay had done in both the Tamil as well as Telugu versions of the film, which was titled Pokkiri in both the languages. However, I made it a point not to observe both the actors in the original versions, because I did not want to be influenced in any way by either of them when I set out to act"
Salman sets out to explain the basic nuances of his character in Wanted. “If the Radhe of Tere Naam was a college kid, the Radhe of Wanted is a hard core man, who is the most wanted man in Mumbai by several people for different reasons. If Radhe is wanted by the innocent Jhanvi to be her knight in shining armor, he is wanted by the corrupt Inspector Talpade for being in the wrong place at the right time. If Radhe is wanted by the dreaded gangster Datta Pawle for coming in his way, he is wanted dead by Don Gani Bhai, because he knows too much. Radhe is also wanted alive by the Commissioner Ashraf Khan because he wants to know what Radhe knows".