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Jawan director Atlee reveals what Thalapathy Vijay said when told Shah Rukh Khan contacted him: ‘Are you serious?’

Atlee is currently basking in the historic success of his Shah Rukh Khan-starrer Jawan. The film is gearing up to zoom past the Rs 1,000-crore mark at the global box office. The filmmaker’s fifth filmmaking venture, which also marked his directorial debut in Bollywood, Jawan has raked in Rs 907.54 crore within just two weeks of its release.

Atlee recently recalled the reaction of his longtime collaborator, actor “Thalapathy” Vijay, upon learning about Shah Rukh Khan’s interest in working with him on a project.

Express Exclusive | Atlee dissects the success of Shah Rukh Khan’s Jawan, explains how he explored the ‘mass layer’ of the superstar

Mentioning that he, like any other director, saw it as a rare opportunity when Shah Rukh Khan suggested working together, Atlee said that he immediately agreed.

“Then I went to Vijay sir and told him. He said, ‘Are you serious? He came to you?’ I said he did. He said, ‘Give your life to it.’ So, everyone was very supportive,” he said during a chat with Hindustan Times.

Watch Jawan trailer here:

During an exclusive conversation with The Indian Express, Atlee had also shared insights about how he approached the process of directing Shah Rukh Khan. “I just read the actor before I direct them. So, I became their fan and that way I read the fans’ pulse also. If you read Jawan as a thesis, apart from being a film lover, you see how whatever the fans expect from Shah Rukh sir is there in Jawan and whatever he’s not seen doing in the last thirty years is also there. So Jawan is the combination of newness and the minimum ‘guarantee’ of the fans’ pulse,” he noted.

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“It was very easy for me as a fan to direct the star, it was not that difficult. I have been a fan but I’ve always had the right balance when I was in front of the monitor to direct Khan sir and we are seeing the result. I think more than 90% of the people in the world love Shah Rukh sir and the others who are not, we will bring them in the SRK army with Jawan, I think,” the director added.

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Opening up about his feelings regarding Jawan’s tremendous success, Atlee said: “I am very happy and I thank God and the audience, but I feel the same as an individual. I can read the responsibility now. More than taking the success home, I am taking the responsibility home with me.”

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“I am now conscious that these many people are going to watch my next film so I have to deliver. They all loved me, so I have to do more. With this I am more confident about how I can make Indian cinema stand globally and make all of us feel proud about it,” he stated.

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