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Unlike his reel self where he goes on a bone-breaking spree like a mean machine in most of the films, Tiger Shroff in real life, is exactly the opposite. Reticent, soft-spoken and a man of few words! The actor who has made a career out of spending most of his time in the air than on the ground and whose fluid dance moves leave your jaw dropped, Tiger lives up exactly to his name when it comes to some 'dishoom-dishoom'.
Excerpts from the interview-
Over to Shroff.Jr-
'We Will Match Up To The Expectations Of The Audience'
Q. Even before Baaghi 2 could hit the theatrical screens, the makers have already announced Baaghi 3. What are your expectations from the sequel now?
A. I am very happy that the producer Sajid Sir is showing so much confidence in our product. I think that's why he has obviously announced Baaghi 3. I am sure there will be expectations from the audience because of the sort of confidence that we have shown on our film. Also, I am very thankful that the film's trailer has been well-received. So that being said, I am very happy right now.
Q. You said that the audience will have a certain amount of expectations from you in this film. Does that add more to the pressure?
A. Yes, of course. But I think there has been expectations right from Baaghi because that film was a hit. The USP of that film was action and we just had to push that further because that's what the audience wanted. Luckily, we have got a great story to back the action. We have a great cast. I can say that we will match up to that expectations and go further.
'I Am Most Comfortable Working With Sajid Sir'
Q. Working with Sajid Nadiadwala is like a homecoming to you...
A. Yes, definitely. I am most comfortable here. It's literally like my house and Sajid Sir is like a fatherly figure in the industry.
Q. So, does that mean you would never turn down his film offer?
A. Definitely, I have no other choice. (smiles)
'All The Mass Heroes In Our Industry Have Been Action Heroes'
Q. Tiger, the action genre was one of the most prominent genres in the late 80s, 90s and to some extend the early 2000s. But slowly, this trend started changing. Despite there being a huge audience for this genre, lesser action films are being made today. Why do you think the producers and actors from your generation are holding back from dabbling with this genre?
A. I don't know what is holding them back. I truly believe that action is a universal language and it has mass appeal. As far as I remember, all the mass heroes in our industry have been action heroes. Look what Salman Khan primarily does and in my father's (Jackie Shroff) time, Sanjay Dutt, Suny Deol and my dad, all these guys were the macho heroes. So, I think action definitely appeals in our country and the whole rom-com generation or romantic and chocolate boy hero (concept) is a very urban, city, multiplex sort of flavour. But when you talk about mass appeal, it is films like Sultan, Dangal and Baaghi which definitely do the runs.
Q. Except for you, why do you think your contemporaries are not much into this genre?
A. Is that true? Maybe not to the level that we are doing right now in Baaghi. Varun (Dhawan) did Badlapur, that was fantastic. Sid (Sidharth Malhotra) has done some action in Ek Villain. There are hints of it, but it's not in the pure action genre and I don't know why people are still not tapping into that."
'I Am Glad That No One Really Attempting To Do Action Films'
Q. But that makes action films your strength, doesn't it?
A. Absolutely. I am happy in this space (action) and I am glad that no one (his contemporaries) is really attempting it. This gives me a little more chance to do more such films.
'For Me, Getting Typecast Is A Victory'
Q. But then, don't you fear getting typecast?
A. I love that feeling. Because getting that identity of an action hero/ dancing makes me feel that I have got some acceptance in some small way. So for me, that's a victory.
Q. Would you like to do films which don't belong to the action genre?
A. I am trying something else in Student Of The Year 2. It's a complete contrast of Baaghi 2. For instance, I am getting bullied and beaten up there. Whereas, in 'Baaghi 2', I am doing the entire opposite.
Q. Which is your favourite action scene from Baaghi 2?
A. The climax action sequence in Baaghi 2. I am sure you guys would be at the edge of your seats. That's was definitely my most challenging scene not just physically but even mentally as well. I have never done something dangerous like this before. I just hope that it's worth it in the end and the audience is entertained.
'I Don't Know What I Am Going To Do In Rambo Now'
Q. For this film, you had to work your physique and even cut your hair. After Baaghi 2, how open are you to take up challenges like these?
A. I have never changed myself like what I did for Baaghi 2. Completely chopping off my hair...now it's grown back..it feels like getting back to normal (smiles) Pushing out myself physically and putting on muscle for the role. All these things were very challenging for my character and for me personally as well. I am very much open to these changes now. My new hair cut was very well-accepted by the public. I was initially very scared about how they would react to my new look. They graciously accepted that and now that has given me the confidence to take risks and try different looks.
Q. Do you have any limitation as an actor in doing certain scenes?
A. I went semi-nude for the torture scene in Baaghi 2.
Q. Before this film, were you open to doing such scenes?
A. No, not really. The director and the producers sort of convinced me to do this scene.
Q. The trailer of Baaghi 2 reminds one of the big-budget Hollywood action flicks particularly Sylvester Stallone's Rambo especially the few action scenes. How different would be your Hindi remake of Rambo from Baaghi 2?
A. I have no idea. I don't know what I am going to do in Rambo now. (laughs) Let's see. I am sure the story will make a difference. The weapons which I would be using there and my look would be different.
'I Was Just Looking At Sylvester Stallone's Tweet For Hours'
Q. What was your reaction when Sylvester Stallone wished you luck on social media for the Rambo remake?
A. It was amazing. I couldn't believe it. Before going off to sleep, I was just looking at his tweet for hours for the good feeling. I have grown up watching this man and here he was writing and wishing me luck. What more could I ask for?
Q. Coming back to Baaghi 2, we don't get to see much of your co-star Disha Patani in the trailer. When you are choosing your script, is it important for you to also have a strong female character?
A. Definitely. Disha plays a very strong character in the film. The trailer is cut in such a way to lure in the audience because of the action. The first film Baaghi was accepted on the basis of its USP which is the action. People are expecting us to take it even higher. But, it's a very character-driven film. There's me, Disha, Manoj Bajpayee, Randeep Hooda, Prateik Babbar, Deepak Dobriyal and Darshan Kumar. We have got a decent cast and we have got some great moments in the film.
'Doing Romance With Disha Is Easy'
Q. You are teaming up with Disha for a film for the very first time...
A. It was fun. We share a great relationship. So, it's very easy-going with her. It's a comfortable feeling working with her. Doing romance with her is easy. Even the emotional scenes because there's just an easy-going factor between us.
Q. Talking about your looks, do you feel you are more accepted by your fans now?
A. Yes, I think I have gained the trust of more people. I have attracted more eyeballs because of my look. I am very happy that I cut my hair which has caught a little more attention. Initially, I was very scared to go for this haircut because I had long hair for the longest time. And suddenly, one day I had to let go of them. I felt naked. I hated to go out and used to keep wearing a beanie to hide away from the public glare.
Q. Finally, would you be all game for a period film if offered?
A. I would love to do a role like Brad Pitt's Achilles from Troy.