Saqib Saleem will be next seen in Salman Khan starrer 'Race 3', which is slated to release on June 15.
What is Race 1, 2 for you? And being in Salman’s Race now?
I am running in the race. I was 19 when the first Race released. My best friend and I went to watch Race 1. We bought popcorn and when we entered the show, it was on so we went to watch it. There were a lot of twists and turns and we watched the climax and the film got over. We didn't understand what happened. At no point I thought I would be a part of such a big film. I love the hate and the kind of reach the film will give is immense. The reach of this film will be far bigger than any other film I have done so far.
Your take on race in Bollywood?
I don’t know what I feel but how people perceive you are what astounded me. I have been here for 6 to 7 years and how perception within the business of films changes when you are your actor. I wanted to do one such film that will remain in the memory of the audiences. My films have been appreciated but they have not been hits. Race has given me that opportunity now. These actors have been in the business for last 30 years and they have a huge fan base. This fan base will help me reach out to the masses. I want to keep working. It's something I really enjoy doing and my excitement never dies.
So was it a fan moment for you to work with all of them?
It was a fan boy moment for me. There was Anil Kapoor, Salman and Bobby Deol around me and I enjoyed myself. I knew Salman a little before starting the film and I got to know how-he works and there was an easy vibe. There was no ego, no pressure. I had an equation with him. I was intimidated by Anil Kapoor. But I remember I had started shooting for the film and we had a small scene. I tried to put my best foot forward because I was sharing the same screen space with him. He made me very comfortable. He reached early on the sets before me and I became all the more nervous. But he made me calm. Bobby and I knew each other for four years as we used to play cricket with him.
Which film of Anil Kapoor have you seen?
I have seen Mr. India 50 to 60 times. I met him at Salman Khan's birthday and told him about it. I used to watch it on VHS. He has a flask and he keeps drinking water from it. I thought he has a special drink which keeps him young. They were also so fit on the sets. He is evergreen. We all worked out a lot. He used to be on the sets at five in the morning. They are all so dedicated that I realized that I should be like them. They are so secure actors and they are sure about themselves. They were legendary stars and were so secure.
My father always told me that the fruit laden tree always bows down. The bigger you become the more humble and generous you have to be. Salman is like that. He is pure heart. He does everything from the heart. My feeling for Superstars has become all the more respectful. They love life and their stories are interesting. That's the level of commitment of becoming a star. It's a process and understanding and my perception has become even more firm that to become a super star you have to be turn a super person first.
Your experience working with Jacqueline?
This is my second film with Jacqueline. We didn't have scenes in that film but here we have. She is very nice and very positive and hard working. She is focused about her work. Daisy is a buddy and slightly misunderstood. She is one of the nicest people I have ever met. I have individual relationship with everybody.
Your future films?
I have a couple of thing coming up. Announcements will be made soon.