Hindustan Times (Lucknow) - Live - - TIME OUT - Prashant Singh

Ihave al­ways been his fan, and he has al­ways treated me like a younger brother.” That’s how Ran­bir Kapoor ex­plains his equa­tion with San­jay Dutt. A num­ber of other younger ac­tors, in­clud­ing Varun Dhawan, feel the same way about Dutt. In­ter­est­ingly, not many may have no­ticed that the se­nior ac­tor hap­pens to be a com­mon con­nect be­tween Ran­bir and Varun, 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 Not just male stars, the com­ing days will also see Al Bhatt and Son­akshi Sinha team­ing up with Mad­huri Dixit-Nene in Kalank, while Sonam Kapoor Ahuja shares screen space with Juhi Chawla in Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga. “She is beau­ti­ful and made things [so] com­fort­able and nor­mal,” says Alia, about such com­bi­na­tions “have al­ways ex­cited” view­ers. “With such set­ups, you au­to­mat­i­cally tap into a big­ger fan base. Also, for au­di­ences, it be­come 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 (Aj D gn and Em­raan

hmi), and the Onc her ini­tial work­ing ex­pe­ri­ence with Mad­huri. Son­akshi says “Mad­huriji has been one of my Upon A Time In Mum­bai se­ries (Ajay-Em­raan 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?” favourite ac­tresses; to be in the same frame with her is an hon­our.”

Alia Bhatt (left) is act­ing with Mad­huri Dixit­Nene in a film Sid­harth Mal­ho­tra has worked in a film with Ak­shay Ku­mar (right) Juhi Chawla and Sonam Kapoor Ahuja (be­low) are now co­stars Ran­bir Kapoor is work­ing with Ajay Devgn (top) and San­jay Dutt (right) San­jay Dutt has been paired with Varun Dhawan (right) Amitabh Bachchan has teamed up with Aamir Khan (right) for the first time

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