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Thread: Feroz Khan: The Boss
04-28-2009, 01:13 PM #1
Feroz Khan: The BossThe sheriff rides off into the sunset
The one and only time I ran into the late Feroz Khan was in a men's room. A swanky Mumbai multiplex was premiering a film with Feroz's son Fardeen in the lead. Just before the interval, Feroz himself popped up in the film, Mogamboistically larger than life.
It was but a few moments after this that I, standing in the loo, saw a pair of shiny cowboy boots swagger into position on my left. On my right stood the son, eagerly asking dad what he thought of the film and his work therein.
The big man, carrying off a bald head and massive sunglasses better than any sexagenarian should, stood in silence as the entire restroom collectively waited.
"It's okay so far," he growled suddenly, before breaking into a big grin. "But give it time, let's see. The hero's just entered the film."
He broke instantly into big, booming laughter and I stood there, feeling for all the world like one of Gabbar Singh's potential victims who'd just gotten a momentary reprieve.
Because no matter where Feroz Khan stood, he was the boss.
In the picture: Fardeen Khan sits with his bride Natasha, mother Sundari (right) and mother-in-law Mumtaz. Feroz Khan stands behind him with daughter Laila (third from left) and other members of the family.
Born and brought up in Bangalore, Khan passed away at his farmhouse there on Sunday, April 26. He was 69, and had been fighting a long duel with cancer. He's survived by wife Sundari, son Fardeen and daughter Laila.
And by an audience who never saw a man's man quite like him.
At a time when heroes were playing good, morally upright fellers of immense virtue, Khan decided to unbutton his shirt and bring on the coolth. Women, fast cars, glamour -- he had the personality to juggle them all. Initially fashioning himself clearly after Steve McQueen, he went on to become his own unique character.
A journalist friend once told me about the time she went to interview Khan, and he happened to keep her waiting quite a while. He apologised profusely and bowled her over soon enough with a few suave lines.
Her interview consisted of a few relatively prickly questions, but Khan stopped her and suggested they go for a drive. She said she still needed to do the interview, and he brushed that technicality aside. He said she could ask him questions in the car, and she, undeterred pro that she was, picked up her notepad and clicked on her seat belt.
It was, as one can only expect from the man who brought racecars to Indian cinema, a sportscar. And he drove at breakneck speed so casually that it completely freaked out our journalist, who just wanted to be back in one piece. The interview happened, but only the way Khan wanted it. Heh.
Toldja, the boss.
In the picture: Feroz Khan with daughter Laila
What is it that defines a cowboy?
Is it the hat? The horse? The number of bullets dodged? The flinty stare? The speed with which the hand can pull out a Colt from a holster or with which it can cheat at poker? The great Ennio Morricone theme he walks around with?
Nope. It's the swagger. The supreme self-confidence with which he carries himself, secure in the extreme self-awareness of his own coolth.
And God knows Feroz had enough swagger to make Texas look square.
In the latter years, there were times when Khan was inadvertently funny. When he was playing son to women far younger than him, or when he refused to hang up his pistol and turn to lower-profile characters. And yet he endured, because he never pretended to be cool, he always believed he was truly cool -- which, in itself, earned him that self-righteous swagger that could never be imitated.
Cowboy? Hell yeah. Marlboro would have been lucky to have him.
Hats off, Khan Sahab. Rest In Peace.
04-28-2009, 01:58 PM #2
Thanks !!!<img src=http://www.orkut-scrap.net/img/Animated-Dolls/1.gif >
04-28-2009, 05:23 PM #3