I found myself in Filmistan today after almost two years. For the uninitiated, Filmistan, as the name suggests –is a film studio. One of the oldest infact; and the most decrepit. But it has a quaint, surreal feel to it unlike any other studio. Maybe it’s the moss covered fountain in the middle of what I think is supposed to be a garden. Maybe it’s the ferris wheel shaped panchayat baithak on which drivers, lightmen and spot boys sit around and exchange some of the most coveted information in Bollywood; or maybe it’s just the 25 foot tree at the entrance that has instead of what you thought were large brown leaves – an inflorescence of Fruit Bats! Yes Bats! Hundreds of the leathery, hives inspiring buggers just hanging there like leaves until dark. And just about wrap time, most crew members will come out of the six studio’s surrounding it to watch the tree literally; come alive.
Filmistan is also super nostalgic for me. Some of the largest drama’s of my personal life of two years ago have been staged here. My big fight with the big director, my realizing I was besotted with those blue eyes I stared into one ridiculously rainy day while standing under the awning of studio 4, my realizing I had been forgotten when my blue eyed boy said he would like to end ‘us’ and later feeling quite stupid that I had taken a child so seriously. And such fun times too like throwing canteen khichdi and maaza on each other (err..yes this was fun at the time, don’t ask me why). I really do miss my filmy days. Endless cups of milky tea, running in and out of vanity’s, insanely incoherent walkie talkie conversations and just the unbeatable feeling that we were creating something cataclysmic (and we very well did!)
Anyway on this particular visit, I realized I wanted to jump Shahrukh Khan. See, I never particularly liked this man. I still think he’s a horrid ham artist. But why the fuck is he getting hotter as he gets older. He was oozing sex on the set today and all us women were very happily swimming in it. He has the sexiest hair cut, even better I have to admit than Mcdreamy’s, he’s realized that his collar bone is the most do-able part of his anatomy and he shows it off like his life depends on it and then there are his buns. And are they swell. Swell little bunny buns.
During lunch we sat around together and while my AA (almost actress) cribbed about the pimple on her cheek and Shahrukh generally ignored her, puffing on the cancer stick that has never really left his hand since he gained manual dexterity as an infant. (though I did notice that he never inhales very deeply, and yes, I was sitting that close to him), I got the feeling of being in the presence of someone really magnanimous. The pride of his stance, the slender lean muscularity of his arms and shoulders, the failure of his garments to cloak his body in a normal clothing sort of way but in a satin thrown on sculpted marble way…. He was utterly detached, looking deep into your eyes when you spoke to him, but yet in a world of his own, like he was struggling against a current that pulled him within himself. Even my poor AA was left utterly star struck and giggled and perspired like a pimply teenager during the almost kissing scene.
Though I am one of those rare cases in the film fraternity that hates hugging people, I conceded this time as Shahrukh did his ritualistic team hugging exercise. The seconds before the hug are my fondest moments. For the next second I was transported to the curb outside the ITC factory near Cox town railway line. Never fall in love with a chain smoker folks. Swell buns and all.