News|July 19, 2012 9:45 am

I’d have loved to direct Mr Khanna in another ad- R Balki

Filmmaker R Balki, who recently directed Rajesh Khanna in an ad endorsing a fan company, says,

I spoke to Mr Khanna a few days back, and he seemed in good health. I didn’t know it had deteriorated again. It was an incredible experience working with him. I’d have loved to direct him in another ad and was even working on it. Mr Khanna was very sharp and his knowledge of cinema was fabulous. He was very professional and extremely aware of what was happening around him.

He flew in for a day to Bangalore to shoot the ad. The concept was of someone who had the maximum number of fans, and he very sportingly agreed to do whatever we wanted. I loved his sense of humour. He laughingly told us that he was fully aware that he didn’t have the same kind of fan following he had years ago, but he appreciated that he will always be in his fans’ hearts. He did the ad for fun.

Though I grew up on Amitabh Bachchan’s films, and later watched Mr Khanna’s films, after working with him I understood why people were madly in love with him. He was tremendously self-confident. He had a unique sense of style, romance and charm. A few people thought he looked unwell in the ad film, but that was because he had sprained his leg and was on painkillers and protein medication. Also Mr Khanna wanted to do the ad and that’s what matters. Throughout the shoot, he never allowed us to treat him like he was ill. Though he was weak at that time, he displayed great spirit throughout the shoot.