It’s the season of double delight as younger stars join their seniors
hav ve always been his fan, and he hhas always treated me like a yoounger brother.” That’s ow w Ranbir Kapoor explains is s equation with Sanjay utt. A number of other ounger actors, including Varun Dhawan, feel the ame a way about Dutt. nterestingly, not many may av ve noticed that the senior ctor r happens to be a common conn nect between Ranbir and Varu un, as Dutt is set to work with them in Shamshera and Kalank, respectively.
More actors have either recently worked with or are about to start work on a film costarring a hero who’s their senior. Aamir Khan will be seen with Amitabh Bachchan — whom he calls his “icon” — for the first time in their next, Thugs of Hindostan. “I’m too thrilled to be working with the actor I’ve admired all my life,” says Aamir. On teaming up with Ranbir, Dutt says, “When I heard Karan’s (Malhotra, director) idea to pit Ranbir against me, I thought it was just brilliant.” Recently, Varun and Shah Rukh Khan worked together in Dilwale, while Sidharth Malhotra shared screen space with Akshay Kumar in Brothers.
Experts feel that such combinations “have always excited” viewers. “With such set-ups, you automatically tap into a biggergg fan base. Also, for audiences, it becomes more of a paisa-vasool film. The interest levels and excitement of filmgoers go up. But these casting coups must be backed up with a solid script,” says exhibitor-distributor Akshaye Rathi.
Actors, on their part, feel it’s a “great learning process” for them. “Until you work with other people, how will you grow as an artist? That’s very important. So, things are exciting for me as well. Plus, if I am a movie-goer, and I see a hero in four films in one year, I will get bored. In Dishoom, I worked with a bona fide action star such as John Abraham, so I learnt a lot,” says Varun.
In recent years, films such as Raajneeti (Ajay and Ranbir), Rangoon (Saif Ali Khan and Shahid Kapoor), Baadshaho (Ajay Devgn and Emraan Hashmi), and the Once Upon A Time In Mumbai series (AjayEmraan and Akshay-Imran Khan) saw younger actors teaming up with their seniors. “It’s a feast for audiences to see two or more big actors in one film. Multiple actors increase the credibility and sheer strength of a film,” says trade analyst Taran Adarsh.
Filmmakers swear by the fact that they cast actors “as per the script’s demand”. As Malhotra puts it, “In my film, Shamshera (Ranbir) is a ferocious, fearless character. So, his nemesis (Dutt) had to be even more fierce and monumental. Who better than Sanjay sir for that impact?”