Your new film follows your tradition of releasing on the Eid holiday. Is this a commercial choice or down to superstition or numerology?
"I tell you what happens, when one film releases on Eid, by the time you are ready with the next one, it comes around again. The best time to release a film is on a festive date like Divali or Eid, or at a time when there are no big films three to four weeks before or after.
"Eid is a festive date where people have saved money, families get together, and people get together to watch films. After the IPL cricket matches also is a good time, because nobody releases their film during the matches, so movie wise, there is a hunger for entertainment after the IPL."
After having massive hits recently with Dabangg and Ready, do you feel pressure to match your earlier commercial success?
"No, I don't feel any kind of pressure. In fact the harder you work, the less pressure you feel to succeed. Then when the film releases, on a Friday, or in this case a Wednesday, it is up to the audience to declare the film a huge hit, a mediocre film, or a disaster.
"Whatever the audience has felt we go by that, because we are making films so that people get entertained. Earlier it used to be that the money spent to go to the theatre was not that much, so the quality of the films did not have to be that high."
So, how have things changed in recent times?
"Today films are a lot more expensive, and since we have large families in India, and as we are hearing now with this anti-corruption situation going on, it means that salaries are not that high, but families are large. So it is a huge responsibility to your fans that you do your best in the movie.
"As you get older you are supposed to look younger, look fitter, be more energetic and do action and romance even better. It's strange, but there is a lot more responsibility out here for us now."
Some of your recent Hindi films seem quite South Indian-inspired. Would you be interested in doing a Tamil or Telugu film in the future?
"You know, the strange thing is those territories are really small. But they make as much money - or perhaps more money - in a small territory, because those fans are die-hard fans who keep on watching their movies again and again and again and again. But those fans do not come into our fan category. The language is different and the culture is slightly different. Right now they are making a lot of films that we used to make earlier.
"My father (scriptwriter Salim Khan) has written so many movies, and they have copied most of my father's movies. Now, I thought it is time to take back. I have just done two of their movies, and since the audience is not the same it does not make a difference.
"If you take a Hollywood film or a Chinese film, people do watch these movies and people have seen these films, so there is no point in remaking them. If a film is already a hit in the south, that means it is already a tried and tested formula."
How was the experience of working with Kareena Kapoor after Kyon Ki and Main Aur Mrs Khanna?
"When we started the film, people told us 'It's a jinxed couple', and that our earlier two films had not done well. Even though people loved the films on DVD and on satellite, they wondered why the films did not do well. To that I say, 'You did not go and see the films in the theatre. That's the reason why they didn't do well.'
"So there was this whole thing of why cast Kareena, and take someone else etc. But she fitted the role, and I don't believe in these superstitions that the film won't do well because the couple is seen as unlucky. I think it's a case of the best man for the job - or here - the best woman."
Did you base your character in the film on your real-life bodyguard Shera?
"No, that would have been the biggest disaster. Shera as a bodyguard works really hard for me. He is the most loyal, the most faithful and the most sincere figure. But on film - it's different - it's a script. So I have taken just some aspects from him, like his loyalty."
How was the experience of actually living within Mumbai's Film City studio complex during portions of the shoot?
"It's a beautiful location, a beautiful house and you overlook the whole city. From my home it would have taken one and a half hours to get there or get back, potholes on the road, bad traffic. That's three hours wasted. So I used to enjoy myself, work out, go for a run in the mountains, it was beautiful."
You are known to be a keen cyclist...
"I cycle a lot. I have liked that since my childhood. Right now I don't do cycling for the love of it, but I cycle to the shooting, so I get my cardio out of the way. I sweat it out, go take a shower in the van, and then I'm fresh and ready to shoot."
In a competition between you and brothers Arbaaz and Sohail, who would make the best bodyguard?
"I think Sohail would. He knows when to be diplomatic. He knows when to get out of a tight corner. He knows when to be diplomatic. When Sohail is with me I have no fear."
What was it like working with British model-turned-actor Hazel Keech?
"She's lovely. She's really lovely. She has done really well in the film. She was here a few years ago and then I met her through my younger sister (Arpita Khan).
"When we were looking for a girl to play Kareena's friend, she just struck me, because usually the friends that they use in our movies don't look like friends at all. So we wanted someone who would match up to Kareena's energy, and be like a friend. So that is the reason why we took Hazel."
What's your favourite dialogue from the film, Salman?
"You know how people always give you this spiel that they are doing you a huge favour. When actually, they are not doing you the favour, they are doing themselves the favour. So the dialogue is: 'Mujhpe ek ehsaan karna ki mujhpe koi ehsaan naa karna.' Do me a favour but do not do me no favour."
So why should we come and spend our money on watching Bodyguard?
"Because if you don't, you will miss a kick-ass film."
Bodyguard is scheduled to release worldwide on August 31.
Watch the Bodyguard trailer below: