Emraan Hashmi plays the role of legendary cricketer Mohammad Azharuddin in the upcoming biopic Azhar. The 37-year-old actor has trained extensively to get Azharuddin's signature moves right, with none other than the former Indian skipper, for his part in the movie.
Some of the cricketer’s traits and quirks stayed with Emraan for a long time even after the film was done.
“Some of his mannerisms lingered on to my next film Raaz 4. I did face slight problem while shooting for my next and my director would keep telling me – ‘Please get out of Azhar right now’. I had copied his style for so long. The small things he does like he shakes his head, his gait, walking like him with one shoulder up, head tilted on one side. I would constantly do that on the sets and it consciously became part of my style when I was playing the other character. It took me some time to get out of Azhar,” laughs Emraan, in an chat with Firstpost.
“But,” he continues, “It is not focussed in the film. Probably you won’t see that in the film as we didn’t want to take your attention to small specific things. There were other things that I had to imbibe like the way he eats. Azhar bhai has a very peculiar way of eating with his fork and spoon. We took videos when we would go out for dinner together to record the way he is eating.”
However, Emraan is surprised that Azharuddin, who is a guarded person and doesn’t open up easily, shared quite a bit from his life with him. “Obviously, he opened up to us because the film was being made on his life but I wasn’t expecting that. I had heard about Azhar bhai that he doesn’t share too many things but he opened up quite a bit and we were quite happy with the kind of stuff we got from him. To make this a personal journey I had to get stories, moments and experiences of him that is not just media stories you have read about. I had to spend time with him and get all of this first hand,” says Emraan.
He also admitted that shooting for the biopic was a very satisfying and fulfilling journey.
“So much so that now I want to do more of such films that draw from reality and demand the kind of work and research we put in as compared to fictional films,” he concludes.