‘Dunki’ director Rajkumar Hirani reveals why it took him 20 years to collaborate with Shah Rukh Khan

In an interview, he remembered watching the TV series Circus in the student common room, where a particular scene and camera angle caught his attention 
In frame: Rajkumar Hirani with SRK
In frame: Rajkumar Hirani with SRK

Bollywood filmmaker Rajkumar Hirani, the creative mind behind the recent film Dunki featuring Shah Rukh Khan, shared insights into why he chose to collaborate with the actor and opened up about being captivated by Shah Rukh’s charisma. In a candid interview, Hirani reflected on his journey from film school to finally teaming up with the Bollywood superstar.

He recalled his film school days, emphasising the challenges of making a first film, finding a producer and getting actors on board. He vividly remembered watching the TV series Circus in the student common room, where a particular scene and camera angle caught his attention. 

“I remember studying in a film school and the real struggle for any filmmaker was how we would make our first film. Will we get a producer? Will any actor come on board? So we had a common room where all the students would watch television together. I recall watching this series called Circus and I vividly remember the scene including the camera angle where one actor was performing and delivering a monologue. I didn’t know who he was but I loved his performance. I told myself once I passed out from school, I would approach him and make a film. It took me two years to graduate from the film institute and by that time, Shah Rukh Khan had become a huge star (laughs). So, I had to wait for 20 years to collaborate with him on a film,” he was quoted as saying. 

Expressing his admiration for Shah Rukh, Hirani shared, “I was enamoured by his charm. I would put on an eye mask and earplugs when he was giving a shot. Once he finished, my assistant would tell me ‘Sir shot khatam ho gaya hai (Sir the shot is over),’ and then I would open my eyes (laughs). Jokes apart, he is an amazing actor and an even better person.”
Dunki, released on December 21, has garnered mixed reviews from both audiences and critics. According to sources, the film achieved a box office collection of INR 49.7 crore within its first two days. Presented by JIO Studios, Red Chillies Entertainment, and Rajkumar Hirani Films, Dunki is currently in a box office clash with Prabhas-starrer Salaar.

Co-written by Abhijat Joshi, Rajkumar Hirani, and Kanika Dhillon, Dunki narrates the heartwarming tale of four friends—Manu, Sukhi, Buggu, and Balli—who aspire to settle down in London for a better life. The film stars Shah Rukh with talented actors like Vicky Kaushal, Taapsee Pannu, Boman Irani, and Anil Grover.

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