Shahid pays tribute to Aamir with new movie

Feb 5, 2008 Subhash K. Jha

Mumbai, Feb 5 (IANS) Shahid Kapur pays tribute to his favourite actor Aamir Khan by playing a teacher who helps a group of troubled young students in his new movie "Paathshaala".

The similarities between "Taare Zameen Par" and this film are striking.

Choreographer-turned-producer and Shahid's close friend Ahmed Khan doesn't deny the fact that "Taare Zameen Par" has made a huge difference to the way we look at movie entertainment and at the parent-child relationship.

"I would happily admit that 'Paathshaala' is inspired by 'Taare Zameen Par', except for the fact that 'Paathshala' was conceived and written a year ago. It's about a sensitive teacher's interaction with a group of kids," Ahmed told IANS.

"I've signed some really talented kids like Sweeney Khare from 'Cheeni Kum', Ali Haji from 'Fanaa' and Dwij Yadav from 'Nanhe Jaisalmer'. We're really fortunate to suddenly have so many talented kids in our cinema. So why not put them to creative use? It's about time we addressed issues regarding children in a serious but entertaining way," said Ahmed.

Interestingly, Ahmed has selected some of the most extraordinary child actors to come into the film industry in the last couple of years.

"And on top of that, let's not forget I was once a child actor myself," laughed Ahmed who played a child in "Mr India".

"Shahid too was a child actor. So we're all putting our minds into making a film about the mind of a child and the child within the man."

Ahmed has directed two films, "Lakeer" and "Fool N Final". However, "Paathshala" is being directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali's assistant Milind Ukey.

About "Fool N Final", Ahmed said: "Please don't blame me. Blame the producer. For the first time in 'Paathshaala', I'm doing a film straight from my heart."

The set representing the school where 'teacher' Shahid does an Aamir has been erected in Film City.

"We even have a basketball court as part of the school set," said Ahmed proudly.

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Taare Zameen Par


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