Posts Tagged ‘mansoor ali khan patudi’

Dubai: Saif Ali Khan has revealed that he looked up to his late father “tremendously – in almost every way” and that he was a “remarkable man”.

The 41-year-old Bollywood actor, whose ancestors ruled Pataudi, an erstwhile princely state near Delhi – spoke for the first time about the rich legacy left behind by his famous father, Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi who is nicknamed “Tiger” for his aggressive sporting prowess.

Often referred to as the Chhote Nawab (junior prince) by the Indian press, the star is aware of his rich inheritance — more so than before.

“I looked up to my father tremendously — in almost every way. He was a remarkable man,” Gulf News quoted him as telling tabloid!

“He was so dignified and inspired so much respect in all of us. I will not emulate him, but I will try and absorb the very special qualities that made him the man that he is. I would like to carry on the good work that he was doing.

“I don`t know how to word it, but in whatever way I can I will take his legacy forward,” he added

In the UAE Friday to be honoured by a luxury watch company, Bollywood heartthrob Saif Ali Khan opens up about his lineage, his career and ‘Saifeena’

It calls for a certain amount of class and breeding to be gracious while grappling with a personal loss. And Saif Ali Khan, just coming to terms with the death of his father, legendary cricketer Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi, on September 22, has that in spades.
Graciously accepting my condolences with a polite “thank you, ma’am”, the award-winning actor — whose royal lineage is well-documented, with his ancestors ruling Pataudi, an erstwhile princely state near Delhi — spoke haltingly as he talked about the rich legacy left behind by his famous father.
“I looked up to my father tremendously — in almost every way. He was a remarkable man,” said Khan in an exclusive interview with tabloid! as he waited to board a flight to Mumbai.
Often referred to as the Chhote Nawab (junior prince) by the Indian press, the Aarakshan star is aware of his rich inheritance — more so than before. India, a nation full of cricket lovers, was plunged into grief when its beloved “Tiger” — a nickname his father earned for his aggressive sporting prowess — died.
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“He was so dignified and inspired so much respect in all of us. I will not emulate him, but I will try and absorb the very special qualities that made him the man that he is. I would like to carry on the good work that he was doing. I don’t know how to word it, but in whatever way I can I will take his legacy forward,” said Khan, adding that his father supported several charities.
Perhaps it’s this quality that made the Delhi-born, UK-educated star the ideal ambassador for Swiss luxury watch brand Jaeger-LeCoultre. Friday at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival, Jaeger-LeCoultre will decorate Khan with the inaugural Glory To The Actor Award in a nod to his sizeable contribution to Bollywood. But when you ask the recipient whether it was his pedigree that won him this account, he demurs. Khan believes it was a healthy mix of Bollywood and blue blood.
“I think it’s hard to differentiate one from the other. If it’s just my family background, I don’t think they [Jaeger-LeCoultre] would have ever heard of me. The fact that I am an actor in Indian films has advertised my name and made it known to the world. My job and my profession is obviously something that I am proud of. I am equally proud of my family background. I think one complements the other in a way. It’s hard for me to separate the two.”
The 41-year-old, who made his debut in the family drama Parampara in 1992, found Bollywood the best leveller. Film folklore has it that showbiz did not mete out the royal treatment to Khan — whose mother is legendary actress Sharmila Tagore — as he struggled to gain a place in the highly competitive industry. In the early ’90s, he was panned for his effeminate voice and was mostly a part of ensemble films such as Yeh Dillagi and Main Khiladi Tu Anari, which had far more established stars leading the projects.
Cinematic coups
But the 2001 box office hit Dil Chahta Hai — a coming-of-age film about three friends — put him firmly on the Bollywood map. In recent years, he has topped up his account with several cinematic coups. Be it playing the jealous Langda Tyagi in Omkara, Bollywood’s answer to Othello, the commitment-phobe Jai Vardhan Singh in Love Aaj Kal or cold-blooded murderer Karan in Ek Hasina Thi, Khan has aced the acting game.
“It’s been 19 years and I am very happy that I found something that I love and it’s wonderful to be loved so much in return. I feel I am better at [acting] now than I was before. But, I have a strong feeling that the coming months will be my best phase in my career, starting with Agent Vinod.”
The highly anticipated spy-thriller is the next film from his production house Illuminati Films, which he started in 2009 with the blockbuster Love Aaj Kal. Khan plays the title role along with Kareena Kapoor, his longtime girlfriend. Shot on a massive scale, his magnum opus has been in the works for the last two years.
“Agent Vinod, as my director Sriram Raghavan puts it, is a little bit Bond and a little bit Tin-Tin. It’s ultimately an action adventure. This guy is not a copy of James [Bond] or Jason [Bourne]. I am amazed that Sriram has come up with an original character, because it’s so easy to ape a Western spy considering the number of Hollywood films that have been made in that genre.”
Though the plot is intriguing to industry insiders and Bollywood buffs, it’s the on-screen pairing with Kapoor that’s grabbing headlines. The divorced father-of-two began dating the Bollywood A-lister in 2007 and has been attempting to stoke some on-screen chemistry with thrillers like the terrorism drama Kurbaan.
Though it didn’t ring any bells at the box-office, the Saifeena (the tabloid title bestowed on the power couple) chemistry in the film was much applauded. And as expected, the impending marriage plans of this dynamic-duo are debated, scrutinised and analysed to great lengths. Khan is a tad irked by it all.
“At the right time next year, we can comment on our future plans,” said Khan, adding that working together on Agent Vinod would naturally put the spotlight on their personal lives.
“People generally tend to be more interested in our personal life than our professional lives. And that one question in a long-drawn interview ends up grabbing headlines. It negates everything you are trying to put across or talk about. While I understand it, I hope people also realise that I respect my relationship tremendously. Therefore, I try and avoid answering certain questions. There’s so much more going on.”
Dutiful son
The rough cut of Agent Vinod has already been submitted to the Berlin Film Festival programmers. Khan is convinced that it will make the cut.
“Agent Vinod is a very special film. And I know it has been stretched over two years, which could have been avoided, but it’s got some superb action sequences. Though it’s a bit premature to speak about it, I have a good feeling about it,” said Khan.
He will be flying straight to London after the Jaeger-LeCoultre awards ceremony in the capital on Friday, to shoot the last leg of his epic. Apart from Agent Vinod, which is tipped to release in February, he’s also planning a zombie comedy (yet to be titled), plus Cocktail, a romantic comedy with Deepika Padukone.
Surprisingly, his professional commitments have not forced him to turn his back on his personal life. Khan was on his way back to Mumbai after visiting his mother Tagore in Delhi when tabloid! caught up with him over the phone on Tuesday. As he put it, it’s all about striking a fine balance.
“When your father is alive, you can afford to be a bit negligent, even careless. But after he’s gone, I have to take care of my mother and my sisters as well.”
Saif on…
His watch collection: “I love watches. In fact, I collect them and I have a fair amount of them. But I have only limited myself to buying one watch a year and I look forward to it. Also, Jaeger-LeCoultre have very kindly given me a personalised edition of Jaeger-LeCoultre’s Reverso Grand Taille with the Pataudi family crest engraved on the reverse of the case.”
On the term Bollywood: “I am not massively proud of the name. I know, I am nobody to complain. But it really doesn’t do much for our international image. There are certain people who make very corny movies and have notorious dealings with people. They generally colour the reputation of everybody. But the people I have worked with are well-organised and in touch with the world cinema.”
On marketing blitzkrieg that has become the Bollywood norm, such as the RA.One promotions headed by Shah Rukh Khan or Aamir Khan for his rural drama Peepli Live: “Aamir [Khan] has the best cinematic mind in the business. He’s an inspiration and I would love to follow some of his clever strategies for Agent Vinod.”

Family of former Indian cricket captain Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi, who died of a lung ailment last month, held a prayer meet at the Chinmaya Centre in Delhi on Saturday. Many personalities from the film industry, politics and cricket world including Kapil Dev, Anshuman Gaikwad and Ajay Jadeja attended the meet.

“I have never heard Tiger abuse, he was an utter gentleman. He was very lazy and never used to carry his own cricket kit. I always asked him to carry it, but he didn’t listen and borrowed from others” said Bishen Singh Bedi, former cricketer, sharing an anecdote.

Apart from known faces of the glamour world, Tiger’s fans from across the city joined in to pay their last tribute to the Nawab.

Naresh Hemrajani, a resident of Delhi and a Pataudi fan, said, “He was the captain when I was young and used to play cricket for my school. He was my idol. I have great regard for the man and he has earned this stature.”

Even after the government abolished the Privy Purse in 1971, Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi continued to be regarded as a nawab in the 52 villages of the Pataudi riyasat. Pataudi’s only son Saif Ali Khan will be named the Nawab of Pataudi riyasat 40 days after the burial ceremony of his

father.
“We are expecting another huge gathering on that day, as people from across the state would come to see the pagri rasm (coronation ceremony) of Saif,” said Asraf Ali, one of the loyal caretakers of the palace.

Typically, the locals get a glimpse of the Nawab family during the day-time Ramlila, a tradition started during the time of Pataudi’s father, Nawab Iftikhar Ali Khan.

On Friday, Pataudi locals turned up in droves to pay their last respects.

“I have seen Saif many times here, with his father and alone as well. He mixes easily with village people. In such time, it is our duty to share with him his sorrow,” said Luckman Khan, a resident of Pataudi.

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Prateik may have stopped playing cricket a while ago, but he remains a huge fan of legendary cricketer, Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi, who is his Aarakshan co-star, Saif Ali Khan’s father.

Naturally, when Prateik started working with Saif in Prakash Jha’s upcoming film, the duo bonded over the game. And although, Saif and Prateik share screen space for the first time in Aarakshan, they soon became close pals, thanks to the sport.

In fact, Prateik has given a special bat to his co-star to get it autographed by his father. According to Prateik, Pataudi Sr. had a “very unique and special talent.” Saif too, was quite impressed with Prateik’s knowledge and passion for the gentleman’s game. “Cricket has always been my favourite sport.

For me, bonding sessions with Saif started when he discovered that I was a cricket fanatic. I have asked him for a huge favour. Since I am a big fan of Pataudi sir, I have requested Saif to get me his father’s autograph on my favourite bat,” says Prateik. Although surprised Saif immediately agreed to fulfill the request, as Prateik wanted to showcase the autographed bat in his bedroom.

The actor’s bonding over the game has been so thick, that on the sets of Aarakshan, Saif even taught his co-star a special trick. Since Prateik has been a fast bowler, Saif decided to teach him the trick of throwing a tennis ball hard on the pitch to make it move like a season ball. Saif had learned this trick from his father.

Not many are aware that Prateik has been a fast bowler for his school and state teams. In fact, till his college days, he apparently wanted to be a pace bowler and a pinch-hitter like Irfan Pathan. But when he reached standard 12, he finally quit playing cricket to concentrate on acting.