It’s good see Saif Ali Khan back in the reckoning with the webseries Sacred Games. He deserves to be on the top.That’s where he belongs.
Over different periods of time, I’ve interacted with all the three Khan superstars Shah Rukh, Salman and Aamir. I was on very warm terms with all three in different time zones. Until major differences cropped up and things just ceased to be hunky-dory.
This cycle of kinship and animosity has haunted me in most of my relationships within the film industry.
Saif , the fourth Khan superstar is a special case for me. To begin with I am his mother Sharmila Tagore’s greatest fans. Even today when I speak to her my hands tremble and I gush like a schoolboy.She laughs off my effusiveness , even warning me once that “such things” are not allowed to be said any longer.
But who can stop a Sharmila Tagore fan? For me Saif was my favourite actress’ son to begin with. Then he married Kareenawith whom I’ve shared a very warm relationship in the past. This happened much later. When I first got to know Saif he was going through a traumatic breakup with his first wife Amrita Singh.
Saif had a lot to say, and at that point of time I think he trusted me a lot.The interview where he lashed out at Amrita was (naturally) a sensation. Saif was , as expected, guilt-ridden about the impact.
“Did I say too much? Should I have been more restrained in my comments ?After all she is my children’s mother. That will never change.” Saif agonized, as only Saif can, after the interview was a headline-grabber.
I assured him it was fine . He needed to have his say. Then came his relationship with Rosa(where is she now?). That too didn’t end too well. Saif was looking for something in his Significant Other. He found that person while shooting for VijayKrishna Acharya’s Tashan in Ladakh. We could Saif-ly say that the one good thing which came out of Tashan was Saif’s relationship with Kareena(which is more than what the director’s demoniacal dud Thugs Of Hindostan has to redeem itself).
I think Saif is more at peace with Kareena than he has ever been. The restlessness, the fidgeting , the constant uncertainty is gone.This is the most selfassured phase of Saif’s life. We saw how much at peace he was with his daughter the very lovely debutante Sara Ali Khan on Karan Johar’s show.
As I watched him look so relaxed with his daughter I remember my first meeting with Saif at his well-appointed apartment.He met me warmly led me into the study, said he will back in a while….and forgot I was waiting there.More than an hour later he emerged, all apologetic.
I wrote a bitchy column on this encounter . I think he must have read it.Looking back I can laugh at the episode.I feel I shouldn’t have been less intolerant of the wait. Because at the end of the day, Saif means no harm to anyone. He is one of the most affable well-adjusted individuals in the entertainment business.
He has evolved not only as a human being but also as an actor. His performance in Baazaar is his best to date. So what if it didn’t work? The boxoffice is never a trustworthy mistress. In the way he looks, his genteel manner and the fluctuations on his career Saif is the millennial’s Shashi Kapoor who incidentally was Saif’s mom’s favourite co-star.
Amd Saif is now married to a gorgeous woman from Shashi Kapoor’s family. Saif’s son Taimur is now a bigger star thanSaif and Kareena put together. This is one Khan whom Saif can’t compete with.