CHENNAI: SRK's upcoming flick Fan will see the Bollywood star playing nemesis to his biggest fan. Off screen though, Shahrukh has actually followed his biggest fan on Twitter. Sudhir Kothari, a 29-year-old businessman from Chennai was so touched when this happened that he set up the SRK Chennai Fan Club that now operates out of 42 branches worldwide, and goes as as far as Australia and Azerbaijan. So of course there are almost as many first day-first shows booked out for members of the club in countries where the movie releases this Friday.
|Incidentally, when Sudhir tweeted SRK a photo of his newborn son Vansh in 2014, the actor retweeted the picture and several media outlets mistook the baby to be Shahrukh Khan's newborn son AbRam at the time!|
SRK has 19 million followers on Twitter. And he follows 79. How did you catch his attention?
It was during a live Q and A session three years ago. I sent a message saying that I had just started a company called 'Chak De Stock,' and I asked for his blessings. Not only did he respond wishing me well, but he followed me.
Do you remember the date?
August 28, 2013
Whoa. What does your wife say when you forget your anniversary?
Honestly because I am such a diehard SRK fan, my family is now one of SRK haters. But he is my one true inspiration. I've been watching his movies ever since the age of four. I respect him as my God. I pray to him.
And has he answered your prayers?
Ever since he blessed my company, it's only been getting bigger and bigger.
How excited are you about Fan?
I think more than any of his other films, I am most excited about this one. This film is for us — the fans.
In the movie, Gaurav (the fan) wants to see Aryan on his birthday. Have you ever managed to wish Shahrukh on his birthday?
We actually go as group every November 2 to wish him a happy birthday. It gets planned a whole month in advance, when fan clubs put in their request, how many people are coming and so on. Last year, for Shahrukh's 50th we gifted him three idols of characters that he played from different movies — Raees, Dilwale and Fan. We took 50 fans to meet him that day. (Smiles)
What do you have in store for Chennai fans when Fan releases this Friday?
We have booked 100 tickets across two screens at Escape in SPI Cinemas, and actress Puvisha has agreed to come as well. You might remember she played the role of Deepika Padukone's sister in Chennai Express.
We also have mass bookings for our branches in other parts of India and around the globe as well. Our Twitter handle @SRKCHENNAIFC actually has a map of all the places we have tickets booked in for the opening day of Fan. This includes USA, Australia, Algeria, Dubai and Pakistan.
We even had fireworks planned but decided against it after what happened in Kerala.
Having connected with so many fans the world over, have you ever met a bigger fan than yourself?
I can't call myself SRK's biggest fan because there are so many. But I will say I am his luckiest fan. I am after all, the only fan he has ever followed. (Smiles)