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Saif Ali Khan: 'London is an amazing city to shoot Indian films'

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Saif Ali Khan has said that he loves shooting films in London.

Attending a press conference yesterday (January 14) to promote his forthcoming release Race 2, the actor said that there were many benefits to shooting in the capital.

Bollywood actor Saif Ali Khan arrives at a photocall for Race 2 at a central London casino, Monday, Jan. 14, 2013.

© PA Images / Ian West/PA Wire



Speaking to Digital Spy, Khan, whose films Cocktail and Agent Vinod included sequences shot on location in London, explained: "I feel that London is a second home.

"I love working here. I love the mind-set of the people who I work with here. I enjoy interacting with the press here more so than anywhere else. I think we have a lot in common. There are many benefits to shooting here.

"Obviously one of the drawbacks could be that once you've shot here a few times it might be difficult to shoot something new. But I don't even agree with that. I think there are many sides to London.

"You have to do a bit of work. You have to do your reconnaissance properly and you find it's an amazing city to shoot in and multi-faceted in terms of how it can be shot, so I'm very much inclined to shoot my next movie here as well."



Highlighting the benefits to Indian filmmakers, chief executive of Film London and the British Film Commission Adrian Wooton told Digital Spy: "We're the Mayor of London's film agency. We're here to encourage film production to come into London from all over the world. From our point of view India is a very important market. It's a very important, thriving film community.

"We very much want to extend our welcome and we have a whole range of new opportunities on offer. There's tax relief as an incentive so Indian filmmakers can, through the co-production treaty we have, can get a fiscal incentive, but on top of that we have a very wide variety of film locations available.

"Film London is here to help troubleshoot, to help advise on locations, to see how we could make it quicker, easier to get into special places that perhaps don't always welcome filming.

Deepika Padukone in 'Race 2' poster

'Race 2' poster



"We've done lots of very big projects with Bollywood movies over the years. We've had huge dance musical sequences on places like Tower Bridge, where the bridge was shut down, or whole roads.

"We do everything we can to encourage Indian filmmakers to shoot and to draw on the studios, the locations, the crews and the whole ambiance of London.

"I'm thrilled to be here to welcome Saif with his new film and I'd like to say, come back and make more movies in London. We look forward to working with the Indian film industry in the coming years and we hope Race 2 is a tremendous success."

The sequel to the 2008 action-thriller, Race 2 stars Saif Ali Khan, John Abraham, Anil Kapoor and Deepika Padukone.
Khan explained the challenges involved in making a sequel.

"The main challenges lie with the scriptwriter and the production crew trying to make a better move than the last one," he explained.

"Sequels have become quite fashionable now. In the '90s I did a movie called Main Khiladi Tu Anari and I suggested to the director that we make sequels and they said, 'We don't make sequels in India'. So I thought, well I'll not mention it again.

"Now it seems, as is common in industries such as ours, people follow trends. At one point Cocktail was going to be called Love Aaj Kal Part 2, but not every movie demands a sequel.

"But this as a script and genre lends itself well to a sequel, so the main challenge is for the production crew to make it cooler, better-looking and with plot points that are as interesting as the first one.

Bollywood actor Saif Ali Khan arrives at a photocall for Race 2 at a central London casino, Monday, Jan. 14, 2013.

© PA Images / Ian West/PA Wire



"As for playing the role, mentally it's much easier because you've done it before, but physically it's a little demanding because there's more action and however many times you do that it doesn't get less tiring.

"It's not completely different, but I don't think it's necessary for you to see the first one to enjoy this."

The 42-year-old actor later met fans at a meet and greet at Cineworld Feltham.

Described as a "race to the end", Race 2 is directed by Abbas-Mustan, and releases on January 25.

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