B-Town stars going the extra mile for their roles

Published: 24 October, 2013 09:20 IST | Nilesh Rao and Shameem Khan |

Learning a skill set or shedding and gaining weight for a role are just some of the things actors do to get into the skin of the character. Here's listing a few of them who went the extra mile to make their role a memorable one

Hrithik Roshan
Made a lot of effort to get into the skin of magician Ethan Mascarenhas in Guzaarish who becomes a quadriplegic due to an accident. It was reported that the actor learnt magic tricks from an Ukrainian magician to get into the character. He was asked to skip his regular workouts since he could not look fit and trim in the film. A fitness freak, Hrithik did not work out for six-seven months. He even confessed to tasting batata vada, samosas and other fried stuff after 15 years because he had the liberty to look fat in some parts of the film. He was also asked to sport a beard to which he relented so as to give authenticity to his character. He even met quadriplegic patients as well as doctors treating them to get a feel of his role.

Amitabh Bachchan
Big B’s efforts earned him the National Award for the film, Paa, which was based on a rare genetic condition known as progeria. It took four to five hours daily for the makeup artists to put on the actor’s prosthetic makeup, and two hours to remove it. Also, while applying the makeup, he couldn’t eat, drink or talk. He wore specially designed dentures throughout the film and the dubbing so that he could sound like a child, talking with a lisp. He also spent most of his time on the sets with kids rather than with other unit members to get a hang of how they talk and behave.

Farhan Akhtar
For the role of the Flying Sikh Milkha Singh in Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, Farhan transformed himself into a running machine. The actor trained extensively with sprint coach Melwin Crasto and physical trainer Samir Jaura. He ran regularly on the race tracks at a school in Mumbai. Jaura trained Farhan for over 13 months to prepare him for the shoot, during which Farhan gained 10 kgs. He also put Farhan on liquids-only five-day diets that would help show off his muscles. Farhan also underwent high-altitude training in Ladakh. The result was a ripped body with a less than five per cent body fat and increased endurance. Interestingly, for Milkha’s younger look, Farhan had to lose over 14 kg.

Shah Rukh Khan
In My Name Is Khan, SRK played a character suffering from Asperger's syndrome, which showed him having difficulties in social interaction and behaviour. King Khan read a lot, watched documentaries and met people affected by autism and doctors who dealt with them in order to prepare for Rizvan’s character. Also, he would practise the body language and speech patterns of his autistic character at home. Apparently, the actor rehearsed daily to get the dead expression in his eyes, and to show the difficulties in hand-eye co-ordination. He also had to put on weight for the film.

Priyanka Chopra
While preparing for her upcoming film based on Mary Kom, the actress spent long hours getting trained in the boxing ring. She says, “I practised boxing for almost four-five hours daily. I hate exercising but don’t mind pushing myself for this film. I want to get the toned muscles and athletic look, which is required for the film. I had been following a strict diet as well. This is the toughest film of my career so far.” She also visited Imphal in Manipur to meet Olympic medalist Mary and her family. She also went to the location where the boxing champion sweats it out.

They did it too...
>> Aamir Khan took classes in tap dance for Dhoom 3
>> Madhuri Dixit did workshops in martial arts for Gulab Gang
>> Ranbir Kapoor learnt to play the guitar for Rockstar.
>> Imran Khan worked hard to get the Haryanvi dialect in Matru Ki Bijlee Ka Mandola
>> Katrina Kaif practised belly dancing for ‘Sheela ki jawaani’ in Tees Maar Khan
>> Dilip Kumar took sitar lessons for Azad
>> Shabana Azmi took classes in Carnatic music for Morning Raga.  

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