Aamir Khan khan who is often called the Perfectionist of Bollywood always welcomes young talents with open arms. While talking in an interview, the star actor has given some valuable tips to the young and aspiring screenwriters. Here is what he said:
“A good script is a must for a great movie”
People often give credit to me for my successful movies. Till now, I have done very few films written only for me. When Rajkumar Hirani worked on PK or ‘3 idiots’ or when Ashutosh wrote ‘Lagaan’ or when Amol Gupte wrote ‘Taare Zameen Par’. All these films started from a single person’s mind and the thought itself is so beautiful. It is very important when you are making a film the first step is the script. If you make a mistake on that, the journey ahead becomes difficult.
“Don’t judge the story. Listen to the script”
There is a long journey between the story and the screenplay. Don’t judge the story even if you like it or not. When I heard the story of ‘Lagaan’ in a five-minute narration from Ashutosh, I rejected it right away. In 1895, there is no rain and people are unable to pay taxes so they decide to play cricket against the English to get rid of the taxes. I said “What a bizarre thought!”. I told Ashutosh your first film was a flop. The second one with me also did not work. Now, you have brought this story! He called me after 3 months saying that he has a script and wants to narrate it. “I called him up and said, ” If it is the same cricket story, then I won’t listen. But, for the sake of friendship, I heard it just to reject it. But when I heard the screenplay I was blown away. I was so taken by the film from the very beginning.
“Unless we value our writers, our industry will stagnate”
There are two sides to it and I think both are responsible. Very few people can identify a good script. Secondly, every writer thinks his script is the best. So, he fails to see its weaknesses. There are writers who are not flexible which is fair enough and we respect that. But then I may not be able to work with you. Because for a producer or a director, it becomes completely difficult producer or a director it becomes completely difficult to maneuver after that. You have to negotiate your way through all of this. I’ve always believed for the longest time that writers have not been getting a good deal. Fortunately, things are changing gradually as time is going by. It should change because unless we really value our writers, our industry is going to stagnate.
“I ensure that everyone including writers get paid before me”
When I like a story or script, I want to do it and since I want to do it, I take responsibility for it. When the movie comes out, whosoever has invested in it should not suffer loss. When everyone is paid and all the cost is recovered then I take a percentage of the profit. So, when a film does not work well, I shall not earn a profit. Nobody should be at a loss. Certainly, I take a higher percentage from the profit, as I am risking my time on that.