I'm humbled that people still consider me an icon: Bachchan

I'm humbled that people still consider me an icon: Bachchan

Megastar Amitabh Bachchan, whose movie career is into its fifth decade, says he draws inspiration from young actors and is humbled that he is still considered an icon among them.

The 69-year-old actor began his cinematic journey in 1969 with "Saat Hindustani" and rose to superstardom with "Zanjeer".

With more than 180 films to his credit, Big B still continues to be active in his career, having inspired many over the years.

"I am very humbled that people still consider me as their icon. It is fantastic to see young boys and girls erupting out of nowhere, who may be professionally trained or not trained but are doing a fantastic job," Bachchan told PTI.

"They are far more superior to what we were when we started off. I am so lucky to be living in the same era as these actors whom I have met and even had the opportunity to work with some," he added.

His career continues to scale new heights, the latest being his Hollywood debut in Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby", a 3-D film adaptation of F Scott Fitzgerald's 1925 novel of the same name. The film also stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan and Tobey Maguire.

"Baz Luhrmann was in India and he called my office. He had an artiste with him who wanted to gift me some paintings. We chatted in our office and at that time we did not really discuss any film project.

"After almost a year and half, Baz called me again and said that there was a small role which he wanted me to do. I decided to be a part of the film just as a small gesture," said Bachchan, who was in Ranthambore recently to front the 'Save Our Tigers' campaign.

When asked if he would take up such Hollywood projects in the future, Bachchan said, "I don't know. It all depends on the kind of film or role. There are so many great actors in Hollywood itself so it does not really make sense to cast others. Having said that, if ever there is an opportunity for me I will definitely think about it."

Talking about the Hindi film industry, the veteran actor said the audience now is in no mood of consuming anything that is "stale". And in catering to it, he believes opportunities have opened up for a humongous talent pool in the country.

"There was a kind of staleness in our presentations. But now the audience, which is aware of what is happening all around the world, don't want it any longer. There has been an influx of great talent in our industry off late and the credit goes to the masses.

The audience now wants to see good cinema and are not ready to settle for just anything."

Big B also said that the reason for this transition in the film industry is mainly because of the high quality content easily available to the audience.

"Part of the reason I believe is that now they have access to TV and the internet, films have to match up to that quality that the audience is getting almost free of cost in their homes. There lies the problem.

"The desire is really to improve the quality of storytelling and when that happens there will always be opportunities for the huge pool of talent in our country," he added.

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