Dear A.K_ Happy birthday

Believe it or not, the actor turns 44 today!

Aamir Khan turns 44 today!

Here are some Alap ZalapS with him

What have been your personal milestones?
The first milestone would be when I decided to get into films. I was 15 or 16 at that time and Aditya (film-maker Basu Bhattacharya's son) was my classmate then. He wanted to make a short film called Paranoia. I just helped him out and I realized that this was where I wanted to be. That film never was released; I am sure the television channels would be interested in showing it now.
And then at the age of 21, I got married to Rina. That was 1986. We did it on our own and no one knew about it, not even our respective parents. The decision to marry was spontaneous but the preparations around it were all planned.
In 1993, my son Junaid was born and it totally altered my life. I still remember the feeling of becoming a father for the first time. Everything changed, my priorities, my was a different feeling altogether. In 1998 my daughter Ira was born and that was a turning point too.
And, of course, another major milestone would be my marriage to Kiran (Rao) three years back. That was an extremely important milestone because before that I was going through a really low phase emotionally. I needed someone really badly at that point of time. I am the kind who needs an emotional anchor all the time....

You seem like a strong man who takes his own decisions and leads his own life....

Often, what is obvious is not the truth. The fact is I cannot function without having that someone who I am emotionally dependent on. It's very tough for me to lead a lonely life.

Which films would you say have been the turning points of your career?
QSQT, Ghajini, Taare Zameen Par, Lagaan and Sarfarosh. Tell you a secret... I had vowed not to be a producer ever because I had seen my father go through bad times being a producer. And then I read the script of Lagaan. Ashu (Ashutosh Gowarikar) was a flop director at that time but I had faith in him. I was not sure what to do.
Then I thought of great film-makers like Bimal Roy, V Shantaram, Guru Dutt and thought that these 'are the directors who weren't afraid of taking risks'. They did what they believed in, and I should follow that. My head was telling me not to, but my heart was saying just do it. Even with films like Sarfarosh and Rang De Basanti, common sense would say don't do it, but my heart said I should. And all those films in which I took a decision with my heart have been milestones. So, always follow your heart. Every time I thought I had made a calculated decision it went drastically wrong....

Parampara was one of them.

The 20s, 30s and 40s...which phase of these age groups have you enjoyed the most?
I have not seen all of the 40s, but I think 20s was great. I had fun always but in my 20s I learnt a lot and grew as an actor. While 20s was about professional growth, 30s, especially late 30s was about personal growth. I went through a huge personal and emotional crisis after my divorce with Reena. This made me look inwards a lot.
I stopped working and living for a bit. That really helped me because I changed as a person totally. That was the phase, which helped me grow immensely as a person. The 40s has been good so far, as I feel I am professionally at my peak. If you compare me to my 20s, I have far less insecurities, but the stakes are higher now. Either way the stress levels are the same.

How old do you feel mentally?
(With a smile) 25? No actually early 20s, 22 maybe.

You look 25...
I would give one advice to every one. You are what you eat. Follow a healthy diet, drink lots of water and sleep well. I began drinking three litres of water after Fanaa and Rang De Basanti, both films where I didn't look so great...look at the change now. People ask me what I do, and I say just eat right and drink lots of water.... Simple!
Simple? That's what it seems. Now, only if one was also blessed with that ever-ticking super-intelligent brain.

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