It is a privilege to have been a part of the old and new Sholay: Amitabh Bachchan

Are you nervous to play the role of the biggest villain – Gabbar Singh – in the history of Indian cinema?

Even if an actor has an experience of 30 – 40 years, he will always be scared on the first day of shoot. He will keep thinking about his character, his dialogues, his cameraman, his unit etc. Before going in front of the camera, every genuine artist will be nervous. So even I feel nervous.


It is not just difficult to play the character of a villain; it is tougher to play the role of a lover and to romance an unknown lady in front of thousands of people.


Has Gabbar Singh been your toughest get up ever?

There have tougher and terrible make ups than this. I hate putting make up. However, I land up putting it in all my films and more so because I am old now.


You were a part of the old Sholay and now you have been associated with the new one too. So besides being an actor, what else links you to the film now and then?

It is a great privilege to have been a part of the old Sholay as well as the new one. It is a one off case. I have with me happy memories of Sholay, but some doors need to be shut as this is a different project.


Filmmakers, actors and even the audience seem to react negatively towards Ram Gopal Varma Ke Sholay. You are the only factor of hope due to your presence in the new and old Sholay. Does that increase the responsibility on your shoulders?

As an actor we should have the liberty to present our skills and then the audience should have the liberty to comment. Let us perform.


Don’t you think too much importance is being given to the villainous character of Gabbar, which in turn will promote negativity?

Gabbar Singh has been the best villain ever. When Ramu decided to remake Sholay he wanted to give importance to Gabbar because he had immerged as the best character.


It is incorrect that we are portraying negativity by projecting Gabbar as such a big hero. We are just acknowledging the fact that we like this character and how it was written.


We are not saying that what Gabbar did was good. The way his role was played was good.


On 20 October the remake of Don will release. Your comment.

I am curious to see how the film has shaped up. In fact I met Farhan and Shah Rukh recently. Shah Rukh told me that as soon as the first copy of Don was out he will show me the film. From what I have seen of the promos so far, the movie seems good and has a classy look.


On 11 October you will turn 64. Is there any message for your audience worldwide?

I don’t have any message to convey. I always welcome wishes with great courtesy and respect. I thank my audience who has been showering love since so many years. I hope that their love for me makes me do good work and I can make them happy in return.

Rohini Bhandari

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