Thugs Of Hindostan has been criticised by movie goers. The film which stars Aamir Khan, Amitabh Bachchan, Katrina Kaif and Fatima Sana Shaikh is trying hard to stay afloat. Besides recording a low figure at the box-office, it’s met with harsh reviews and slamming on social media. And this has not gone down too well with Shah Rukh Khan, who is also a close friend of Aamir Khan and Amitabh Bachchan.

In a conversation with The Telegraph, the superstar spoke at length defending Aamir, Big B and the failure of their film, Thugs Of Hindostan.

Shah Rukh said, “I would like to say something. It’s a little personal and I don’t know whether it’s right to say it or not. This is something that’s saddened me and so I want to share it. When it happened to me personally, I wasn’t so sad, but this time I am. There are people who have given excellence to cinema for years. A film can be good, a film can be bad; none of us can ever claim ki maine duniya ki sabsi achchi film banayi hain. Mr Bachchan and Aamir have been people who have constantly contributed to the excellence of cinema. The greatest contribution to Hindi cinema in the last 10 years has been from Aamir, and with Amitji, it’s been even longer. Now if a film of theirs (Thugs of Hindostan) doesn’t reach the level that you expected it to, does it take away from what they have done for cinema?”

Elaborating on how people have been excessively mean in slamming the film, SRK added, “I think some people have been a little too harsh. It’s heartbreaking. It doesn’t mean that their spirit is broken, they are all amazing artistes who will bounce back. But one needs to be a little less harsh. I think Stree was fabulous and we need to make 20,000 films like that. But I also think that Thugs of Hindostan is fantastic. Sometimes we do go wrong, but Aamir has never done a film in which he hasn’t put in his best… I’ve known him for 20 years. And if there’s anyone who can put in even more effort than Aamir — which Aamir will also agree — it’s Amitji... and at this age! So they’ve come in with good hearts and great talent and tried to make a film which tries to open up a new genre.

I may be speaking out of turn, but just like we have embraced Stree, we need to give some leeway to films like Thugs… that attempt something different. An adventure film has not been made in India in decades… probably Parasmani (1963) in black and white was the last one. Thugs… has tried to introduce this genre and kabhi kabhi upar neeche ho sakta hai. But the fact remains that in our cinema, we haven’t made an Indiana Jones and screw the comparison yaar, humne Pirates of the Caribbean bhi nahin banayi. So props to them for the attempt.”

King Khan further spoke about his failures and how he deals with them, “I have faced this with Ra.One… woh galat bann gaya, but at least mera effort tha to introduce superheroes into our cinema. Effort can’t be derided like this. If it was my film, it would seem like I was taking it personally, but yes, I am taking this personally. I let people down with Jab Harry Met Sejal, which was an utter flop. But I didn’t want to let anyone down; I just liked the fact that koi story nahin thi, sirf ek ring ke chakkar mein the two people (SRK’s Harry and Anushka Sharma’s Sejal) kheechey chale jaate hain… it was very organic, slice-of-life thi. The other day I met a director who mentioned the term ‘slice-of-life’ and I said, ‘nahin, poora pumpkin do mujhe iss baar’ (laughs). What I am saying is that we need to give everything a chance. If Zero works, it will give people encouragement to make films that are even bigger in scale and story. And if we keep doing it, then maybe one day we will be able to make a good Mahabharat too. Nahin toh sirf bahaar waale hi hamari stories banate rahenge. Aur hum dekh ke sochte rahenge ki humne Gandhi kyun nahin banayi?”
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