Its hard to believe that Shah Rukh Khan, the most romantic hero of Bollywood, turned fifty. And the fact that SRK’s popularity still remains intact could be gauged by the number of people who were anxiously waiting out his Mumbai villa, hoping to get a glimpse of the most popular actor in the world. Thousands of SRK fans turned up and were waiting outside ‘Mannat’ (SRK’s Mumbai villa) , holding posters and placards wishing the King of Bollywood.
Shahrukh Khan’s box-office career has now spanned over 25-years. So is SRK still the Baadshah of Bollywood?
There’s definitely no doubt about it.
Here’s why SRK is still the Baadshah (King) of Bollywood.
- Only Actor to Have a Real Global Appeal
Lot of Bollywood actors have a huge fan following abroad, but SRK’s fan followers include several westerners, especially in Germany.
During the Berlin International Film Festival in 2012, tickets of My Name is Khan were sold out in five seconds after being auctioned on eBay, and that too for a whopping price of €1,000 each. Another German newspaper once reported that the Bollywood superstar’s popularity was on par with the Pope.
Renuka Shahane, who was Shahrukh Khan’s co-star, in Circus (TV serial) says that back in those days Shahrukh Khan was quite content with working on TV and never wanted to be a Bollywood actor. In fact, he would scoff at the practice of pampering bollywood stars on sets.
- Took Bollywood to Newer Territories
And because he’s got a fan following over several countries around the world, it has helped Bollywood to make inroads into several virgin territories. SRK movies are now released in countries in Asia, Africa and even South America, something that had not happened until a few years back.
- Among the Richest Actors in the world
since the last few years, Shahrukh Khan’s name keeps appearing among the top earning actors in the world. His earnings are now in the same league as those of big Hollywood stars, such as Tom Cruise, Johnny Depp, and others.
The actor’s personal fortune is estimated at close to $500m, and most of the money comes from starring in films, endorsing a variety of brands, public appearances, private performances and concerts.
Rumour has it that he charges nearly 1 million Indian rupees per minute for a public appearance.
- Owns Several Successful Businesses
Producing movies is a logical extension for most Bollywood actors, but SRK doesn’t just produce movies, he’s also got a state-of-the-art studio that employs hundreds of people and does cutting-edge work in VFX & post-production.
SRK also owns a cricket team in the popular IPL tournament, that only adds to his brand appeal.
- Guest Speaker at Prestigious Colleges
Another fact that confirms his global popularity is that Shah Rukh Khan keeps on getting invites to speak at prestigious colleges / institutions around the world. SRK is asked to talk about Bollywood and ‘Success’.
My speech today is about Life Lessons at the Edinburgh University & my biggest learning is Life is the only Miracle. pic.twitter.com/CcIwDDUe9k
— Shah Rukh Khan (@iamsrk) October 15, 2015
Shah Rukh Khan at Yale University
Also read: SRK on success, be it films or business
- India’s Most-Loved Poster Boy
Besides featuring on almost every leading Indian magazine, SRK has now graced some of most popular international magazines, including the Time magazine. Shahrukh Khan was featured on the cover of Time magazine, for their 2004 special report Asia’s Heroes 20 under 40. Recently, he also became the first Indian celebrity to feature on the cover of Forbes Middle East (for his contribution to the entertainment industry).
— Shah Rukh Khan (@iamsrk) October 23, 2015
- Inspiring, Witty, Great Speaker
Another reason that SRK is so much sought after for public appearances, lectures and even as a host is because he’s extremely good at engaging the audience.
He has a gift of the gab, is motivational, has a great sense of humour. In his younger days, many found him to be a bit arrogant about his success, but now he comes across as a very grounded person as well.
- See Him in Madame Tussauds
Want a selfie with Khan? It may perhaps not be possible with the King Khan himself. But you do have an alternative. The next time you’re in London, make sure you head to Madame Tussauds. There you can pose with some of the top Bollywood stars, including Shahrukh Khan.
SRK’s upcoming movie Fan is also the first Bollywood film to be shot on the Madame Tussauds museum premises.
- Usually Sweeps Indian Awards
Did you know that Shah Rukh Khan is the only other actor (besides Bollywood legend Dilip Kumar) to have won eight Filmfare awards? I am sure he will overtake Mr. Dilip Kumar in the coming years.
Besides Filmfare awards, Shahrukh Khan has won several film awards organized by other associations.
- Bollywood’s Biggest Romantic Hero
Women just love ‘King’ Khan for the way he romances with his leading ladies on screen. He has set the standards of romance so high that its difficult for even the good-looking younger actors to match those on-screen.
When it comes to romantic dialogues, for a long time, people would talk about Mr Bachchan’s romantic dialogues (especially from Silsila), but now its all ‘King’ Khan.
Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge (DDLJ), Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (KKHH), Veer Zaara, Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham are some of his movies that made women (especially teens) go weak in their knees.
Several young girls still hold on to posters from DDLJ (also Bollywood’s longest-running movie).
Want to thk Team Rohit Shetty & Red Chillies for doing this last minute.All looked happy that I picked Kajol again pic.twitter.com/AioOeaCPkL
— Shah Rukh Khan (@iamsrk) October 19, 2015
17 yrs of KKHH.Thx Karan Santosh Jatin Lalit Salman Faridaji Anupam Johnny Sana Kajol Rani & all. Beautiful memories pic.twitter.com/SmIqkXptUU
— Shah Rukh Khan (@iamsrk) October 16, 2015
- Loves to Go Off the Beaten Path
Shahrukh is probably the only superstar & a romantic hero who has also done negative roles. Be it Baazigar or Darr, Shahrukh Khan didn’t hesitate to take on those roles, despite being a leading hero at that time. Several other actors turned down those roles, which eventually went to SRK.
Shahrukh Khan also didn’t mind putting his own money on Ra.One, a science fiction movie, in order to produce something different (Unfortunately, the movie didn’t do well.)
- From TV to Bollywood King
Television actors get inspired by Shahrukh Khan more than anyone. And that’s because SRK started his journey towards stardom by acting television serials. Khan made his debut in 1988 with the television TV series, Fauji (Soldier) and now is one of the most popular actors in the world.
The fact that he started with television only makes his current achievements even more commendable.
- Does Lots of Charity Work
SRk is also a good Samaritan and does a lot of charity work, and doesn’t tom-tom about it. In fact, he firmly believes that if you do charity for a reason, it’s not charity (as mentioned in the Quran.)
- In 2011, he received the Pyramide con Marni Unesco award for his charitable work.
- SRK works a lot with ‘Make a Wish’ Foundation, where he meets and spends quality time with terminally ill children who want to meet him.
- In 2009 and 2012, the actor “adopted” several impoverished Indian villages, and usually donates the proceeds from his concerts towards victims of natural disasters.
- He often shares the profits from the success of his films with the employees of his production house Red Chillies Entertainment.
- Tech Savvy & Connects with Fans on Social Media
SRK is tech savvy, loves to own gadgets, but more importantly, makes it a point to stay in touch with fans on social media. He responds to most of the queries asked by his fans, and regularly shares updates.
SRK is one of the most followed actors on social media as well.
- He’s Okay to Reveal his Private Sorrows in Public
More than other actors, ‘Badshah Khan’ is okay with revealing more about himself on social media, and sometimes in interviews. He has publicly admitted to crying in his bathroom for days, when his cricket team Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) tanked in the first few seasons of the Indian Premiere League. He went on record to state that it was “the worst phase” of his life. KKR, which he owns with actress Juhi Chawla and her husband, Jay Mehta, managed to win the trophy in 2012 and 2014.
“If you win, then a documentary will be made on you. So I would say one must go and win,” he said in a four-part documentary Living With KKR, which aired on Discovery Channel in February last year.
Before that, Khan was the subject of London-based writer and director Nasreen Munni Kabir’s documentary The Inner and Outer World of Shah Rukh Khan, for the BBC’s Channel 4. He opened up his life, work and 2004 Temptations concert tour in Europe and the United States to cameras.
- He is a Family Man
This is where he scores over his peers like Salman Khan, Aamir Khan & Hrithik Roshan. Besides his professional success, he also comes across as the perfect family man.
Bhai teaching me the moves for Sultan on my birthday. pic.twitter.com/om1v2753u9
— Shah Rukh Khan (@iamsrk) November 2, 2015
In an industry where makeups and break-ups are common, Khan has maintained a squeaky-clean image. He is seen as the perfect husband (married to entrepreneur Gauri Khan) and is an overindulgent father to Aryan, Suhana and AbRam.
- Religious Diversity at Home
Whenever SRK’s name gets dragged in some controversies (political), many refer to his Muslim religion, but in reality, Shahrukh Khan celebrates all festivals & milestones with his family. His wife is a Hindu and the couple believes in all faiths, and have brought up their kids believing the same.
- Still Gets Dragged in Controversies
When SRK recently spoke about the growing intolerance in the country, he did mention that because of the growing intolerance, most of the time he decides to be silent and carry on with this work.
Despite that, once in a while, Shahrukh does find himself dragged in a controversy, and that’s because of his star status.
Also Read: Top Shahrukh Khan Controversies
- He has a flower named after him in Singapore
A unique red-orange blooming orchid in Singapore was named Ascocenda Shahrukh Khan about 10 years ago. The flower grows beside Dendrobium Amitabh Bachchan at Singapore’s National Orchid Garden.
Please feel free to add more…