He has learned to take media gossip with a pinch of salt and now finds rumours amusing. Salman Khan, whose latest love is the small screen, says he will display his "unadulterated" side as the host of Colors' "Bigg Boss 4", a reality show he accepted only after consulting his mom.
"I asked mom (Salma) before considering it and she instantly said yes," Salman, 44, told IANS in an e-mail interview from Mumbai. "I am going to be myself, 100 percent unadulterated Salman. I will call a spade a spade and have lots of fun," he added.
The show started Sunday and has already run into controversy because of the presence of two Pakistani contestants.
Excerpts from the exclusive interview:
Q: Back as a host on the small screen with "Bigg Boss 4" after hosting two seasons of "Dus Ka Dum" - has Salman Khan taken a fancy to TV or hosting reality shows?
A: You can say I have taken a fancy to TV or reality shows, but for me, my fans are most important. When I appear on TV, they don't have to go out, buy tickets and watch the show. They can enjoy watching me on their television sets in the comfort of their homes for free. My family enjoys "Bigg Boss"; they discuss it all the time. I asked mom before considering it and she instantly said yes.
Q: So how different was it from "Dus Ka Dum"?
A: "Dus Ka Dum" was a game format, "Bigg Boss" is completely different. Here you can be more upfront, it has a lot to do with others' actions as well as emotions.
Q: How are you going to add more spice to "Bigg Boss" considering the participants already promise the same thanks to their controversial track records?
A: I am going to be myself, 100 percent unadulterated Salman. I will call a spade a spade. I am a very straightforward person and I will not take any hypocrisy and politics lightly. For those housemates who play clean, they will always find their best friend in me. Those who don't, be ready to expect the worst. But I can promise that viewers will have the most amazing time. They can expect as much fun outside the house as is expected inside.
Q: Any favourite contestant who you can bet your money on?
A: 'Sab ek se badhkar ek hain boss'... this show is quite unpredictable, so you never know who manages to survive and who gets to meet me on Friday when the next eviction happens.
Q: You are sporting a completely cool look for the show. Did you contribute any inputs for the same?
A: Thank you, but all credit goes to Ashley Rebello and my sister Alvira (Agnihotri).
Q: What do you have to say about your controversies'-favourite-child tag in Bollywood?
A. Controversies are fuelled and at times created by the media. I don't react to it and no one around me does either. Since I have come on Twitter, even my fans have stopped reacting to it as they have direct access to me.
Q. Do you think hosting reality shows has made you more comfortable both with the common man and the press?
A. I have always been comfortable with my fans. TV only helps me to be more accessible to them and we all have fun in the process. Regarding media, you guys discuss my life without even knowing it and I find it very amusing.
Q. Do we also see a third season of "Dus Ka Dum" some time in the future? What about the sequel to "Dabangg"?
A. I am currently working on "Ready". Then we have two scripts for "Dabangg" and it could either be a prequel or a sequel. Regarding television, I am on "Bigg Boss" season four now and enjoying it a lot... will let you know what next on TV when I decide something.