His debut film ‘Zameen’ as a director (starring Ajay Devgan of course) may have been disaster but that definitely didn’t stop Rohit Shetty from dreaming big.
Today he’s considered one of the top directors in Bollywood, has given several back to back hits, is friends with the likes of Ajay Devgn & Shahrukh Khan, and also credited for brokering a new friendship between SRK and Ajay.
Besides working with Ajay Devgn and SRK, Rohit has worked with Ranveer Singh and will also be directing Akshay Kumar. The next installment of Golmaal is also in the pipeline. Rohit Shetty also has plans to setup a full-fledged production house which will produce several movies that will be directed by his Assistant Directors.
Besides making movies, Rohit also anchors the action-adventure reality show ‘Khatron Ke Khiladi’ on television (by the way, he himself has the physique and height of a star).
Rohit Shetty started his career as an assistant director for the movie ‘Phool Aur Kaante’ (Ajay Devgan’s debut film).
He’s son of Mudhu Balwant Shetty (M. B. shetty), the famous villain and action director of the seventies, who used to have very few dialogues but his menacing looks & robust build were enough to get him significant roles as a villain.
Rohit is also one of those very few directors in the industry who can effortlessly (and successfully) make movies in both ‘comedy’ as well as the ‘action’ genre.
Fine With Making Masala Movies
After a series of super-hit films, Rohit Shetty has turned producer but his mantra still remains the same – better box office figures (his ‘Chennai Express’ had grossed over Rx. 200 crore).
For that reason, the director has no qualms about sticking to masala movies and working with top star friends like ‘Ajay Devgn and SRK’.
Rohit knows (and is okay with it) that while the masses will love his films, critics will rap them. So is he going to woo his critics? Not yet! “Seven out of my nine films were hits, 80 percent of audience loves my films, the remaining 20 percent may be right in their opinion but that doesn’t make me wrong’. If I try too hard to woo them, I’d be cheating my core audience.”
It seems his father’s Ups and Downs have taught him not to take success for granted. But he’s not under any kind of pressure for his forthcoming releases, and is not going to worry about speculative figures or get carried away by a tag.
But then there were buzz that parts of his upcoming film (Singham Returns) were reshot to ensure that the sequel is bigger and better. so isn’t that pressure?
Rohit brushes aside those rumours and says ‘I made the film in three months. We started on March 12th and it opens on August 15th. I barely managed to shoot what was in the script, where was the time to reshoot?”
Why Making Money Isn’t a Sin
Rohit says that he’s open to making serious, smaller budget films provide they’re economically viable. If he had to make such movies, he’ll have to produce it with new talent.
But Rohit Shetty firmly believes that “Earning money is not a sin and the bottom line is growth.” He’s happy focusing on movies that has good growth potential — tapping new territories and capturing new audiences, and he’s willing to take risks for that. Singham’s Marthi-peppered dialogue made it very popular in Maharashtra, and Chennai Express is Bollywood’s biggest grosser down south because of all the Tamil used without sub-titles.
Friendship Between SRK & Ajay
Rohit has also been credited for his role as a mediator, brokering a new friendship between SRK and Ajay. ‘You need a mediator to sort out a problem, but in this case the problem, if any, happened 25 years ago’.
But then why did SRK drop in at Ajay’s set recently? Some thing like this has never happened in the past?
With a grin, Rohit says ‘That’s because there was no Rohit Shetty on Ajay’s set earlier :)’ ‘Now I’m good friends with both actors, they love me. Plus progress is the way to success’.
Well that’s definitely true! Over time and with progress, its easier to bury the hatchet and move ahead!