Indian movie fans are rejoicing the release of the trailer of Salman Khan's latest film Tiger Zinda Hai, which Bollywood pundits predict will be another blockbuster from the Indian superstar. The trailer for the film has been viewed over 14 million times on YouTube within 24 hours of its release.
With the movie, the 51-year-old Bollywood heart-throb is back to high-octane action — the Indian Tiger's characters usually fling baddies into the air and jump high rise buildings. Just as he did in the prequel, he will share screen space with his ex-girlfriend Katrina Kaif, who plays a Pakistani spy.
While the gripping trailer has captured the hearts of hardcore Salman Khan fans, rumours have surfaced that the actor "refused" to kiss his former lady love Kaif in the film following his "no intimacy" rules.
"Everyone felt that just this one time, just once, Salman would break his no-kissing code because the sequence is vital to the plot and also because, well, it's Katrina. But Salman refused outright," a source told Deccan Chronicle.
The film is inspired by a real-life event that took place in 2014, when 46 Indian nurses were taken hostage by the Isis in Iraq. In the film, Khan will make a comeback as the daredevil Indian spy who risks his life and races against time to save the hostages.
Director Ali Abbas Zafar, who assisted Kabir Khan in the prequel Ek Tha Tiger, insists that the film is a hard-core "gritty" action film. "Both Salman and Katrina liked the story, and Aditya Chopra suggested we make it as a part of the Tiger franchise. Let me also point out, that Ek Tha Tiger was a romantic film, this is a hard-core action film, where the two actors are agents. It's a real, gritty drama," he said during the trailer launch.
Speaking of Kaif's character in the highly-anticipated film, Zafar told Faridoon Shahryar of Bollywood Hungama: "Katrina Kaif is a very strong character, she represents a strong woman of today. She has a full action oriented persona in [the film]. It is padded with the beliefs of what she feels and what is happening today."
Shot mostly in Morocco and Dubai, the film is slated to release during Christmas. Instead of showing Khan as a superhero and giving him unbelievable stunt scenes, Zafar said he tried to make him look more real and human in the action sequences. "He's not a superhero, I like to show him as a human, that's more real."
The Dabangg actor's previous film Tubelight failed to light up the box office with its charm even after being released during the festival of Eid. However, expectations are high that his upcoming action flick will transform the scenario. Tiger Zinda Hai will release on 22 December.