Farah Khan: Making stars let down their hair is no easy task

Farah Khan

Farah Khan now has a lookalike Karah Khan. She not only dresses like her, but can make stars dance to her tunes, perhaps plan a film with Shah Rukh Khan, mince no words and has no qualms about laughing at herself.

The ace choreographer-filmmaker is back on the small screen with a weekend dance and music show, 'Lip Sing Battle'. Karah happens to be funny man Ali Asgar, who impersonates her. For starters, Karah wants to take over the show.

Farah Khan with Farhan Akhtar and Arjun Kapoor

We are on the set of 'Lip Sing Battle' at Yash Raj Studios, Andheri, where Khan has just packed off one more episode. She kicks off her killer heels and settles for flat, comfy footwear. "I am not a judge on the show, where you wear fancy dresses and sit, give marks and occasionally get up to clap. I am the presenter with Ali as the co-host. There's lots more to do here. Coordinating the guests which consists of Bollywood stars besides singers and sports folk. Making them let down their hair is no easy task. Also, the stars have to dance to other actors' tracks, not from their own films as they might be familiar with the lyrics."

Lip Sing Battle's concept is based on the American reality show, 'Lip Synch Battle', which has celebrities battle each other with lip sync performances. It was used on 'The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon' before it was developed into a separate show. But to suit the desi audience, it has been called 'Lip Sing Battle'. "The makers felt people will say synch as sing, so they decided to change it."

Parineeti Chopra and Karan Johar

Hectic pace Khan has shot for five episodes and the plan is to run it for 20 episodes. "By the end of it, I think I will have to get myself admitted to the Jindal nature cure institute. I might just collapse. I have to constantly be on my toes." Considering that most guests are from the industry and are known to her, she's thankful that she is not judging them. "They would kill me if I gave them low scores."

Arjun Kapoor, Karan Johar, Preity Zinta, Farhan Akhtar and Raveena Tandon have already shot for the show. She is hopeful of getting Sunny Deol on board, knowing his aversion to dance. "It will be fun to watch him." She's also roping in buddy, tennis champ Sania Mirza, besides cricketers like Irfan Pathan and Yuvraj Singh. "It is for people who want to have fun and do crazy stuff. They have to let themselves go. I knew Farhan Akhtar had directed Shankar Mahadevan's Breathless video so I made him sing it. He was breathless himself after the performance. We had kept oxygen ready for him."

Farah Khan and Ali Asgar

She cites the case of Arjun Kapoor, who landed on the set to see Farhan rehearsing. "Arjun then decided to take two hours off to prepare for his act. The winner is decided by a studio audience."

String of showsKhan has been on the tube since 2004 when she judged Indian Idol. She has gone on to do several shows like Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa, Nach Baliye, Entertainment Ke Liye Kuch Bhi Karege and even a cookery show, Farah Ki Dawat. Khan combines her TV outings with films, but makes sure she spaces them out to ensure she spends time with her triplets (Anya, Czar and Diva). "I am a mango, not a banana. I prefer to take up seasonal offers. I always give gaps between new assignments," says Khan, whose last directorial outing was Happy New Year (2014).

Preity Zinta on the set of Lip Sing Battle

'Lip Sing Battle' has made Khan realise that the industry needs fresh talent. "When we cast for the show, there are only so many people we can choose from. We do need many more new faces in the industry."

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