25 May 2018,21:29 IST
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Interview Template 2
The old will have to step back: Big B
Subhash K Jha
Amitabh Bachchan speaks on the recent spell of success

How do you react to the success of Sarkar
How does one react to success? Positively.
I'm happy for all concerned and gracious to God

This year you've had four successes, all very different from one another.
It's wonderful to get an opportunity to enact diverse roles. The fact that they have succeeded, speaks volumes about the tastes of the audience. We under-estimate their intelligence by giving them formulaic projects. They are discerning and will acknowledge good cinema. It's encouraging to see so many hits coming out this year. It's great for the industry. Personally, it has been very rewarding.

Bunty Aur Babli and Sarkar gave you and Abhishek a chance to be diverse together?
If you'd like to put it that way...B & B and Sarkar releasing back to back with the same artists, diametrically different in content and feel, and rocking the box office, is any actor's dream come true.

I have experienced this before in my career on several occasions, for it to happen at my age now is miraculous. But I feel proud and exhilarated for Abhishek. It's quite remarkable for a young actor.

Abhishek has gone through a lot of churning
It's not easy to be subjected to humiliation and ridicule and still have the temerity to fight back. But he did it and did it on his own. It's made a man out of him. The praise and recognition have been awe-inspiring. Giving out lavish praise to others is perhaps the easiest part, accepting and handling the praise is tough. And both of us have been having a tough time lately!

It's now a strong belief that there has never been a star with your success record. Statistics support the belief. How do you feel about this?
That round the corner there is someone else who will better your record and statistics. The old shall have to step back and allow the young to take over. That's the way of the world. And if you resist, you shall certainly be run over.

The whole of last year trade magazines, criticised, joked and laughed at my performances at the box office. They carried sarcastic and unflattering caricatures of mine. This year, so far, they have drawn positive pictures of excellence. That's a sign of our success, I guess.

Tomorrow they could be back to their wise-cracks. This is show business. We live from Friday to Friday. Success can be achieved easily. Retaining it is the test. Perennial success is an aberration. The sooner you realise it, the better it shall be for your constitution.

I would like to believe that I am sensible enough not to succumb to such fallacies. It's important to work with sincerity and dedication, to be loved for your integrity and humility, to crave for excellence in creativity, to look for challenges every instant and leave the statistics to statisticians.

Abhishek's success continues. After Bunty Babli and Sarkar, it's Dus....
It's a dream run! But, it is just a dream run. Dreams don't last too long. Suddenly you are wide awake and facing reality. As a father I can only hope and pray that it remains this way, but we all know that the situation is not forever. There will be disappointments and failures and road blocks. Success and setbacks are parallel companions. It's more important to reserve your comments on them, than gloat.

Individually and as a father-son duo the two of you are now formidable force. Would you see `Amitabh-Abhishek Bachchan`, as a brand equity?
This is a typical western jingoism. They love to categorise and label every phenomenon. Any entity that succeeds commercially, bears the risk of being categorised as brand equity.

As professional actors who have had a certain modicum of success, we can be termed a brand. And because the success factor has commercial connotations, we are looked at as equity. In simple terms, it would be in order to say that, for the moment, we sell. Formidable force? Go check the stats.

A majority view in Bollywood is that Abhishek is the next No 1 hero. Your take?
Abhishek is the No.1 son. My desire is that he be a No.1 human. All other numbers are inconsequential!

A bit on your next release Viruddh.
Viruddh is a simple story of an elderly middle-class Maharashtrian couple, who through certain unforeseen circumstances, simply decide to take on the system. Family comes first to them, all else can follow. In life, every trial, every tribulation, requires for just one human being to stand up and express what is right and just, and to fight for it. This couple does just that. It's a humane story, with no frills. No songs, no add-ons, nothing. Just, approximately two hours of sincerity.

Kaun Banega Crorepati is around the corner. You're considered the only large screen star to be successful on television. Your comments.
The KBC format succeeded. It succeeded in 80 other countries as well and Amitabh Bachchan was not the host for all. I just happened to be at the right place at the right time, that's it. It was God's will.