Updated on: Tuesday, October 26, 2021, 08:46 PM IST

'I keep criticism to myself because it becomes a big problem at home': Salman Khan on working with Aayush Sharma in Antim

The actor is sharing the screen space with his brother-in-law for the first time

Tell Salman Khan that his brother-in-law Aayush Sharma now looks like a carbon copy of him in the upcoming film Antim: The Final Truth, and the Radhe actor is quick to negate it. “He is not looking like my carbon copy but a better version of what he was in Loveyatri,” Salman asserts.

The actor is currently awaiting the release of his much-anticipated film, Antim: The Final Truth, which releases in theatres on November 26. Directed by Mahesh Manjrekar, the movie is a remake of the 2018 Marathi blockbuster, Mulshi Pattern, which will see Aayush Sharma and Salman sharing screen space for the first time. The film also stars Mahima Makwana, who is paired opposite Aayush. For the unversed, Aayush, who is married to Salman younger sister Arpita, made his Bollywood debut in 2018 with Loveyatri, which was bankrolled by Salman.

Salman, who has played cop roles before in movies like Dabangg, Wanted, among others, will be donning the uniform yet again for Antim. The movie sees Salman play a serious cop, Rajveer Singh, akin to what he played years ago in Garv: Pride And Honour as Arjun Ranawat. “Dabangg’s Chulbul Pandey was a different cop and so was Radhe and Rajveer Singh Shekhawat in Wanted. Antim’s Rajveer Singh is like Garv’s Arjun Ranawat, serious with heart and mind working in tandem. He is strong and dedicated to his job and despite opposition makes things go his way,” he shares.

Salman, who plays a Sikh cop in the film, says he tries to give his best to every character he plays. “When you play a character like that you need to give your best. It is the same for every character — you need to be pure, respectful and dedicated to that character.”


But Salman has a grouse with the intelligent new-age creative and marketing people around him. “Whenever I narrate an idea to someone around me, the first thing I get is, it is not possible. They start with a ‘no’ and I have to assert that everything is possible. And see how the Antim motion poster turned out after my ‘very competent teams’ made it possible?” he guffaws.

The actor, who shot some music videos during the lockdown, says he was lucky to have wrapped two films during the pandemic. “I was lucky because Mahesh had started shooting Antim and there was not much left of Radhe. At the end of the first lockdown, we finished Radhe. Mahesh is a competent director. He knows what he wants. He only shot as much as he wanted and the film was made in the stipulated time frame; it is his style of filmmaking. We were lucky Mahesh was on our side,” says Salman, happy that they perhaps saved a lot more money on shooting only to later cut it at the editing table.


Salman and Mahesh have worked together in films like Dabangg, Wanted, Jai Ho, Ready and Bodyguard. “Mahesh and I are like brothers. We go back a long way having worked together as co-stars in many films. I like his writing and I have seen all his Marathi films. So, when I got the script for Antim, I asked him if he would be keen to direct the film. He has made many films on the underworld, and thankfully he liked the script and agreed to do it,” he says. Mahesh has also acted in Mulshi Pattern.

Salman will be seen taking off his shirt in a way only he does for a combat scene with a shirtless Aayush Sharma and the actor says both of them have their plusses. “I have an advantage of age and Aayush has an advantage of enthusiasm and four months of preparing his body, (chuckles) and I only had a week-and-a-half to prepare for the body shot. I thought the shoot would be postponed by four days, but it was not. Aayush would not have been able to handle those four days,” he says with a smile.

Is Salman critical of Aayush’s performance? “I keep criticism to myself because it becomes a big problem at home for him. If I say something, it eventually comes back to me. He tells Arpita and she questions me over that. But on a serious note, he is a sensible boy and knows his stuff. He has his brain at the right place and uses it well. And he also has a good heart,” Salman adds humorously.

Sharing an interesting anecdote from the film, Salman shares, “Aayush was hesitant to hit me. He came running at full speed and then landed a timid punch. I told him to keep our relationship aside and focus on who we were on the set and do the scene properly. We took around 12 to 15 takes for that scene and I felt this would happen throughout the film.”


Salman’s other sister, Alvira, is married to actor and filmmaker Atul Agnihotri. Ask about his two brothers-in-law, the Bajrangi Bhaijaan actor says, “Both are different. One is patient and the other is impatient. Aayush is always curious about things. He will ask a ton load of questions like ‘when will the poster will be released’, ‘when are we shooting next’, ‘when are we completing the film’, ‘when are we releasing’,” Salmans adds.

Despite the emergence of the OTT as the third screen, Salman feels the digital medium can never replace the big screen. “Watching a movie in a theatre is a different experience. There’s not much joy in watching it on an iPad, laptop or a small phone. This film was planned for an OTT platform, but we decided to release it in theatre. But, people should take precautions when they come to watch the movie,” he trails off.

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Published on: Wednesday, October 27, 2021, 07:00 AM IST