Tuesday, February 2, 2010

My Name is... Filmi Girl!

As you may or may not have known, I went all the way to New York City this weekend to participate in the My Name Is Khan press conference!!

My blog and I weren't fancy enough to be able to get a one-on-one interview with Shahrukh and Kajol but I still enjoyed sitting in the same room with them and listening to them answer questions.

A proper write-up is here on Bollyspice.com but I thought I would share some of the behind-the-scenes with you, my Internet friends!

First of all, I arrived way too early at Fox Searchlight headquarters because I was super nervous but I wasn't the only one!

Gauri and Priyanka had been waiting outside trying to get a glimpse of the one and only SRK!

I'm sorry I couldn't sneak you inside the building, girls!

So... the press conference was mostly Indian and South Asian news outlets, which I thought was amusing. I'm not complaining that SRK came to New York but a lot of these outlets - like the Press Trust of India - are amply represented in, you know, India.

Anyways, Shahrukh is amazingly charismatic. He looked everyone directly in the eyes when answering questions and really made you feel like YOU were the center of his attention. When he wasn't talking, he was fidgeting. You heard it here, folks, Shahrukh Khan bites his nails.

Maybe they should have let the poor guy just have a cigarette.

Also, Shahrukh is smart and very sharp and witty. I was not expecting that, even though, maybe I should have been. When he mentioned the books he read in preparation and how he has always been interested in the way people think, it was all I could do to stop from jumping up, running over, and demanding a hug and a HUGE conversation about Luria.

He and Kajol had a hilarious bantering thing going on and you can tell they've been friends for YEARS.

Just a note: This is for entertainment purposes ONLY and everything said here was meant in a joking manner.

These segments are taken DIRECTLY and UNEDITED from my transcription of the press conference so please don't use these quotes!!!

On a question about the 'youthful' appeal of the film:

SRK: Unfortunatley Kajol is not as young as she used to be –

Kajol: --very fortunately, very fortunately—trust me I wouldn’t want to be 16 again

SRK: though I’m still 18 so – it’s an older woman, younger man romance.

Talking about the potential of a director's commentary, Shahrukh got a little longwinded:

SRK:...[S]pecifically I think the commentary this time should include issues we had editing this film you know because yes, there are certain statements which are strong and we don’t want to sound radical because it needs to appeal to –it should not be losing its universality – universal appeal to all kinds of people but it’s a great idea and we all like to speak–

Kajol: Yeah, I’m doing the monosyllables and he’s doing the paragraphs

SRK: I'll do the music. *beatboxes*

Somebody asked Shahrukh where his favorite place to shoot was:

SRK: I like Mumbai.

Kajol: The studio closest to his house.

Shahrukh talked about the detention at Newark and how it was awful that people thought it was a publicity stunt:

SRK: … [T]he issue we are dealing in the film is much larger than a detention in an airport – that’s just a small part of it and it happened post –we are finished shooting the film and now people thought it’s for publicity which is unfair for people to think like that but you can’t stop them thinking of you.

Kajol: Actually, come to think of it, I really don’t think you have the pull for it.

SRK: Yeah, I wish I had so much clout.

Kajol: You don’t have it.

Talking about Twitter:

SRK: ...and the only thing that humbles me in life –otherwise I’m an arrogant, pompous self-centered kind of guy--

Kajol: He’s perfect.

SRK: No really—well, when you’re so good looking, you have to be.

Somebody asked Shahrukh if he saw this clip from the Daily Show:

SRK: I saw part of the clip on the news and there was another Asian gentleman, am I right?

Audience: Asif Mandvhi!

SRK: Yeah, he was saying something and I don’t know, it was very funny. They should call me and I’ll show him comedy. He’s the kind of guy that I want to wait and say “Let’s do this witty stuff when I’m sitting in front of you.”

[note from FG - Do you hear that Stewart? It's ON!]

Along with their fave songs from the film, somebody asked them if they SANG! (Which was odd because it was totally a South Asian outlet who asked.)

Kajol: Okay, we don’t sing. [And I cannot emphasize how emphatically she said this. - FG]

SRK: No, I sing but nobody listens.

Kajol: You talk.

SRK: Musically, lyrically…

Kajol: That’s why he likes Twitter because he doesn’t have to sing there.

[some blah blah blah and then]

SRK:...my favorite is “Tere Naina” and despite what Kajol says, I do sing really well. And there are a couple of girls in the world who like it – [dramatic pause] That’s my daughter and my sister.

And then on the question about favorite scenes:

SRK:... I would have just hugged her and told her how beautiful she was in that shot. That’s my favorite scene. And as far as incidents are concerned, see, Kajol kind of bullies us—Karan and me—and I’m very scared of Kajol. All of us are.

Kajol: That’s such a myth!

SRK: No, it’s not a myth. She screams, she shouts, she has a solid team of [two names kept back to protect the innocent] to back her. We get scared of her majordomos. She walks onto the set and she’s already screaming. The best of scenes that we think are amazing, she’ll come and break them apart ‘what is this nonsense—we don’t want this.’ She’s very mean and apart from--

Kajol: This is completely untrue, I have to tell you, this is complete lies that have been fabricated agasint me!

SRK: She said while showing me her shoe. Besides that the funny part—well it’s not funny actually and I do know people believe I’m very frisky and I do have ants in my pants when I’m working and I do like to have things finished fast and long and there was an incident that I nearly had a snake in my pant while shooting one of these watery sequences. We had these water snakes suddently there during the rainy season in Mumbai and that was kind o f scary.

Kajol: That was scary.

SRK: They kept telling us water snakes don’t bite and my thing is ‘do they know this/”

Kajol: Yes! How do they know this?

SRK: How do these snakes know that? They don’t know to bite because they’re water snakes. That was strange but otherwise like Kajol said, we had a lot of fun.

When asked about the title "My Name Is Khan":

SRK: I’ve become very self-centered lately.

Kajol: Actually the title is based on me because I’m Mrs. Khan in the film so MY Name is Khan is actually on me.

[and more on this]

SRK:...and the second part is that just Khan on its own sounds a little action oriented. *sings fake Khan theme music* We didn’t want it to sound like “Don.”

Kajol: My name is Khan—with a K!

And when asked what Karan is doing next:

SRK: Karan is going to sleep for six months.

And their next film together:

SRK: It’s goes like this, Karan goes and tells Kajol and then they call and say ‘we’re doing a film together and you know you’re doing it too’ and I just say ‘yes.’

Kajol: So we bully him.


rhilex said...

OMG! I feel so special to have this exclusive 'filmi girl blog only' 'not on bollyspice' kind of thing, lmao. xD

But Shah Rukh and Kajol are so adorable. I think what makes them so endearing is that when they speak, it's not all sugar-coated. They say what they mean and aren't afraid to say it, you know? It makes them seem human.

Thank you sooooo much for this! <3

Daddy's said...

Aww... love the quotes, very witty and cute. Typical of SRK and Kajol. You must have had a great time.

shell said...

FANTASTIC!!! I'm just grinning ear to ear reading this and I can just hear the two of them together. What a wonderful opportunity to go and witness the conference. Were you just crazy with anticipation? Hope you were feeling okay for it too.
Must reconsider Prathna's offer to come on board the bollyspice team!

eliza bennet said...

First off very glad that you are OK and healthy.

Congrats on the good article! It was a very entertaining read and also thank you for sharing your impressions with us. And how nice of you to try to sneak in the fans :)

And maybe it is a bit silly but I really liked to read your positive thoughts on SRK.

Anisha said...

I'm squeeing like a crazed fangirl at work (thank God, it's lunchtime and the majority of my co-workers are out).

I love them so very much and this behind-the-scenes write-up reinforces that love like a thousand times more!

P.S. Dear Mr. Stewart, you HAVE to have Shah Rukh Khan on you show, kthnxbai.

Ami said...

How did you get to participate in the press conference?? That's so cool!

Shah Rukh is katana-sharp! I learnt one other thing recently. Never quote him on something he said, coz that quote will boomerang at you nearing the end of the interview.. and he'll even give you a special look to say he's gonna spring it atcha. He is probably the only man on earth I don't mind listening to for hours in one sitting even if it's about everything related to himself only.

Thanks so much for the excerpt! So lovely to read their bantering. If KJo is around, it'd be cataclysmic, I'm sure.

ajnabi said...

That sounds like such a wonderful experience--I really really appreciate you writing up the notes!

P-Dizzle said...

hey! thanks for including gauri and me on ur blog! :D too bad we couldn't get into the press conf.. but we finally met him later that night after waiting for 7 more hours! lol
hope everything is well on your end :)

Filmi Girl said...

@p-dizzle Hey, chica! Glad you found me!

Are you going to go see Hrithik Roshan when he comes through NYC for Kites?

P-Dizzle said...

@Filmi Girl haha.. probably not. no $$! spent it all on SRK! lol
will you be there? btw.. is bollyspice looking for writers?

Filmi Girl said...

I'm going to try!! It's Hrithik, after all!!

I don't know about Bollyspice, you can e-mail and ask, though. I think the main e-mail is on the site. :)

Note from Filmi Girl:

I love Bollywood - and all the ridiculous things that happen in Bollywood - but it doesn't mean that I can't occasionally make fun of various celebrities and films.

If you don't like my sense of humor, please just move on by - Trolls are not appreciated and nasty comments will be deleted.

xoxo Filmi Girl
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