It's a dog's life: Aamir Khan on voicing Dil Dhadakne Do's bullmastiff Pluto, and his pets

Devansh Sharma

Mar,06 2018 10:38:55 IST

One would assume that when Aamir Khan lent his voice to Pluto Mehra, the bullmastiff from Zoya Akhtar's 2015 family drama Dil Dhadakne Do, he would have spent a considerable time with the dog in order to get into his psyche. Given Aamir's methodical approach, it won't be a stretch to claim he walked on his four 'paws' to get a sense of Pluto's humbled perspective.

Aamir Khan. Facebook

Aamir Khan. Facebook

But Aamir admits he did not pay any heed to how dogs perceive the world or what humans could learn from their less complicated companions. "Yes, the dog was an important character in the film. He punctuated all the thoughts in the film. He often wondered why humans, unlike dogs, do not express their love even when they feel like doing so," says Aamir, at the launch of the book How to be a Human — Life Lessons from Buddy Hirani, penned by Manjieet Hirani, the wife of celebrated filmmaker Rajkumar Hirani.

Aamir has, in fact, been instrumental in the inception of this book as it was on the sets of his 2014 science fiction satire film PK that Buddy, a Cocker Spaniel, was introduced to Manjeet. "If you remember, there was a scene in PK in which Anushka's (Sharma) character is holding a dog in her hands and talking to the camera about how the dog tried to commit suicide. So I asked my team to look for a very sad, pitiable dog and they found Bunny," recalls Rajkumar Hirani, at the book launch of his wife.

However, Manjeet did not take to the dog too kindly during initial days. While her son, Vir, craved for a pet, Manjeet did not take it to be a great idea as she knew that the onus of taking care of the dog would eventually rest on her. "But as I observed him, I discovered some fascinating traits about him, or perhaps dogs in general. Just like every other animal, and even humans, he is territorial in nature. But unlike us, he does not mind when we ill-treat him or ostracise him. He returns with equal glee and treats you with the same affection," says Manjeet, spelling out how the idea behind her first book came about.

Aamir echoes Manjeet's thought that dogs seldom function in the judgmental space. "Animals are far less judgmental than humans. They are judgmental only when in danger. When a deer knows that a tiger is advancing towards him, he would be judgmental. He should be otherwise he'd get killed. But while they're afraid, I doubt they remember that they would eventually die. Humans have a far better memory so they are aware of their death and that is why they stress about the future. But animals live in the moment," explains Aamir.

Aamir confesses that while his pet Imli has shown immense love towards him, he often forgets her name. However, that may turn out to be a blessing in disguise, given the controversy Aamir landed himself in 10 years ago when he revealed that the name of his pet at his Panchgani guest house is Shah Rukh. "Shah Rukh is the dog of the caretakers of our house. When I bought this house, it came with the caretakers," he had later clarified. Clearly, Aamir knows a thing or two about 'personifying' dogs.

Updated Date: Mar 06, 2018 10:46 AM