Ajay Devgn is known as a man of few words and wants his work to speak for himself. And that has indeed been happening. Though his last few films like 'Himmatwala' and 'Satyagraha' didn't perform well at the box-office, the actor sprung back into action with Rohit Shetty's 'Singham Returns'. And now Ajay is gearing up for yet another entertainer 'Action Jackson' which releases this week. In a brief tÃªte-Ã -tÃªte, Devgn talks about 'Action Jackson', his next directorial 'Shivaay'and more. Excerpts from the interview:
It's the first time you are not having a film after 'Action Jackson'. Any specific reason?
Like I have told you before, I have been planning that for many years but things didn't work out. It took me 2-3 years. I wanted to give complete attention to direction. And now my focus is on 'Shivaay'.I am directing and acting in the film.
You have off late worked with Rohit Shetty & Prahudheva, who have a similar approach to commercial cinema. What is the difference between them?
I have done 150 films and have worked with many directors. I don't think that both have a similar approach. Both are completely different. Their style of filmmaking is completely different. Prabhu believes in different styling and so does Rohit. Prabhu wants his characters more stylish whereas Rohit keeps it real. Even the action is different.
Did you undergo some specific training for 'Action Jackson'?
Not really, but I did lose weight because Prabhu wanted me to lean down and not look like a 'Singham'. I had to learn martial arts and hence needed to lean down. Also I had to train myself with swords. So I took time to learn that.
Is performing action today as challenging as it was earlier?
That time it was lot more difficult. Now it has become easier with lot more techniques and safety measures. People use harnesses and all, which I try and avoid. I do use, but usually I avoid it.
Ajay you are often associated with a good cop character lately and now you are playing a badass. How excited are you to see people's reactions?
I don't know. I don't think so there is this image of just of a cop. You just convince people with your characters. If I did 'Singham', I also did 'Once Upon A Time In Mumbai' then I have done 'Company' as well. So I have been appreciated as the underworld character also and as a cop as well.
Were you nervous when Prabhudheva approached you for a film and that he might make you dance?
No I wasn't really nervous. I trusted him completely and he is the best choreographer we have.
How was it dancing with Prabhudheva in Keeda and AJ Theme Song?
I really don't know how was it and how has it turned out.
Was it easy romancing three heroines in 'Action Jackson'?
There is no fun romancing on-screen. You are doing a shot and not even thinking who the person is. So it doesn't make a difference whether there are two heroines or three.
Prabhudheva is known to be a very demanding director & Manasvi found him strict. What is your opinion?
All the good directors are demanding. They will get it out what they want from you. Manasvi was new and so she had to be pushed. Otherwise he is a very cool guy.
How was it working with Anand Raj, the villain in 'Action Jackson'?
He is fabulous. He is a great actor down South and has done very well in the film. His look is extra ordinary.
Prabhudheva is a man of few words. How is he as a director?
Well, we both are man of few words and hence we understand each other very well. He explains how to act (laughs). Prabhu is a good actor so he acts and shows us.
What are you expectations from 'Action Jackson'
I don't know. I am keeping my fingers crossed. Everything looks positive so let's hope the best for it.
When you sign a film, do you think of the box-office collections at that point itself?
That also bothers. If you think the script is brilliant but it is for the niche audience then you reduce the budget.
The music of 'Action Jackson' is doing well. Which is your favourite song?
I know all the songs have picked up very well and that is nice. My personal favourite is Gangster Baby.
You are showing off a toned body in the movie. Do you believe in 6-8 packs?
I am not showing 6 packs in 'Action Jackson'. I don't believe in them. I just have a lean body. I don't promote six pack abs.
Many of your fans are asking whether you would be doing a comedy anytime soon?
'Action Jackson' is a comedy film. There is lot of humour and Prabhudheva humour is amazing. I myself do not like that buffoonery kind of comedy.
You once said in an interview, people don't offer you 'Zakhm' & 'Raincoat' kind of roles now. Do we see you depicting them in 'Shivaay'?
'Shivaay' has got lot of action but it is very emotional. So I would say that kind of intensity and drama is there. I don't have item numbers.
Will 'Shivaay' be as emotional as your first film 'U Me Aur Hum'?
Yes but in a different way. That had Alzheimer and many people didn't understand it. This is straight emotional.
Is the Rosshan Anddrews film with Kajol on?
That film was never on. It was a wrong story. We are working on another script and will let you know if something works out.
Your Marathi film 'Vitti Dandoo' released last week. What made you step into Marathi movies?
I loved the script. It was a touchy story about a grandfather and grandchild and people reacted very well so I decided to produce it. The story attracted me.
Do you think the trend of multi-starrers or two-hero films has died down?
It is very difficult unless you have a great script that balances both the stars because none of them will want to have something less. Secondly, the calculations and money angle has become so high, that affording two stars in one is difficult. Earlier, it was a different era.
Ajay you are co-producing three films with Prakash Jha. Please tell us something about it..
I am not co-producing it. I am just presenting 'Gangajal 2' and we are still working on 'Satsang' and 'Raajneeti 2'. If the script is good, I might act in 'Satsang'.
Any plans to introduce your kids through your production house?
No plans currently. I don't know what they would want to pursue in future but currently they are too young for this. They have to first complete their studies.