- You've been a part of many Abbas-Mustan films but not with the Race franchise. With Remo now helming the latest installment, how did the film come about for you?
Well I’ve been working really hard and trying to get work. I’ve been going out to get work. I remember I met Salman, Salman said “You know everybody goes through ups and downs. You know like I climbed onto your brothers back to move forward”. So, I said “Mammu let me climb onto your back” and he just laughed, and he said, “Yes definitely I will think about something”. We tried to do something together, but it didn’t work out. Suddenly one day Salman called and says “Mammu shirt utharega?” and I said “Mammu mein kuch bi kharega”, and that’s how I got to go and hear the script of Race 3.
- You've recently spoken about reinventing yourself. What changes did you make for the role in Race 3 specifically?
More than re-inventing I did restart my life, and restarting was just being basic. What is a basic necessity for an actor is to be fit, healthy and look sharp and positive. I started looking after my health, I started working out, eating right kind of food and believing that things are going to happen. A positive attitude has really helped me to change and look the way I do.
- The Race franchise was known for twist and turns, car chases and a lot of action. We've a bigger cast now as well as a different theme; family. Why do you think will this new theme and story setting appeal to audiences?
Race 3 is 3 times better than the first 2. There’s 3 times of everything in it. Action, family drama, songs. I’m sure people are going to enjoy it because a lot of effort has gone in. It has everything in it like a proper commercial film with songs and drama and action.
- Salman Khan praised you a few times in interviews and on social media. How was your working relationship with him on-set?
It was awesome. Salman is such a big superstar but, yet he is so down to earth and so selfless. Salman is just somebody who likes to do good for other and when we were working he made everyone so comfortable, so it was great fun working with him.
- There were mixed reactions to the trailer. What feedback have you been getting? How do you deal with negative feedback?
Well, there’s always good and there’s always bad. Good is very less and bad is always more but reviews always come, and everybody has a free will to say what they feel. It doesn’t really matter because at the end of the day the work and the product speaks for itself.
- How was your experience of working in such a huge ensemble cast? Do you find performing easier when so many other actors are sharing screen space or is it more difficult?
There’s nothing like easy or difficult. When I’m working with others I just look at myself as a character and I just become a part of what I’m doing. It’s fun working with a lot of actors because everybody has their own styles and it just motivates you to do better.
- The music is quite appealing. What is your take on the soundtrack?
I think it’s a really great soundtrack. It has all kinds of styles of music and I really enjoyed Heeriye and I really liked Selfish, so these are two of my favourite tracks.
- Since every Salman Khan film has some comedy, was there a lot of improvisation for such scenes?
There’s improvisation in every film when we shoot, there’s always certain elements that get added on set and definitely this is a Salman Khan film. it has to have that kind of humour. It has all those things which all the Salman Khan fans would love to see.
- Tell us a little bit more about the character you are playing and how you prepared for the role...
I’m a school teacher in the movie. I’m joking, I can’t reveal anything about my character. I can only say that he is a very cool, suave and stylish character that I play in this film. That’s all I can say.
- The Race franchise so far has fared well at the UK Box Office. What are your hopes for the film here?
Well I hope it rocks and becomes bigger than the other 2. But then I always wish that all my films become big hits.
Race 3 releases on Eid-ul-Fitr 2018