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Feeling Lucky



Zayed Khan.

WHO SAYS being an actor is easy? Yet the burden must be a little lighter when you have a perfect gene pool to draw from. When you have Sanjay, Feroze and Fardeen Khan as immediate family and Hrithik Roshan as brother-in-law. Reasons enough for Zayed Khan to feel `Lucky' and breathe easy?

But it was only once he breathed easy when, as an eight-year old, he first breathed the filmi air on the sets of Kala Dhanda Gore Log, his father's own production. Since then, being Sanjay Khan's son did not open any privileged door for this aspiring actor. He had to unlearn a few things and relearn others. As he puts it, "There was no dad-launching-son parade happening. My dad is such that even if I tell him I have won an Olympic gold, he would tell me, `Dude, you have only climbed one mountain while there is a whole mountain range to conquer yet'."

Hence, to make a mark in the tinsel world, he has done everything necessary - a two-year acting diploma from the London Film School, learning martial art, dance, going to the beach to learn how to throw the voice and sculpting his own style of physique. He has been sitting idle for hours on the sets just to watch Fardeen and Hrithik in action. And it was sitting on the sets of Aap Mujhe Achche Lagne Lage, which fetched him his first break in Pantaloon Production's Chura Liya Hai Tumne that proved a dud at the box office. His current claim to fame is the blockbuster Main Hoon Na, but he refutes the suggestion that he has been rediscovered in Main Hoon Na. The role of Lucky in the film was initially written for Roshan. When things did not work out, it was Khan who found himself lucky. "I was pretty much a guy like that in college with long hair, rings and a little arrogance," he says, adding, "In a positive way though."

Khan admits that his new hairstyle, short now, has helped him gain new fans. "A get-up always helps," he says. Moreover, his new look has impressed some producers and he is sporting the same hairdo in his forthcoming movies. In his kitty, he has Satish Kaushik's Vaada opposite Amisha Patel. He is portraying the role of an obsessive-compulsive lover. Then, there is Shabd with Aishwarya Rai and Sanjay Dutt. Sanjay Gupta's Dus with Sanjay Dutt, Sunil Shetty and Abhishek Bachchan. Dus is a high-octane, fast paced film, while Shabd is a psychological thriller where he plays a young professor of photography. In addition, of Punit Sira, I-Proud To Be An Indian fame, has roped in the cousin Khans, Fardeen and Zayed, in his soon-to-be launched Maidaan.

During his recent visit to Delhi, Zayed kickstarted a health spa at Janakpuri and signed a deal with Showdiff Worldwide to manage all his endorsement deals. As per the deal, he will have to stay away from alcohol, tobacco and paan masala ads. "They send a wrong message to children," he says. Showdiff manages the endorsement deals of some cricketers. "He is the first Bollywood actor to have an agency handle his marketing commitments," says former cricketer, Ravi Shastri, the vice chairman of Showdiff.

Now, that's Lucky!

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