Written by: Ayesha Babar
The stellar cast of the soon-to-be-released Happy New Year, including Shah Rukh Khan, Deepika Padukone and Abhishek Bachchan, along with India’s most beloved actress, Madhuri Dixit-Nene and Malaika Arora Khan, were in London this past weekend to create an evening to remember at the city’s biggest entertainment venue –the O2 arena!
The London show that featured these stars dancing to some of their most famous tunes, was the last of a tour, aptly titled, SLAM, that saw sell-out shows in the US and Canada over the last few weeks.
‘We knew we were going to do this show from the first day we were all together on set. Everyone was so hardworking, giving their all and even now that we are travelling and tired, we are still constantly pushing each other and are cheerful. You need that to put together a show like this’, explained the superstar, Shah Rukh Khan, while speaking to the media earlier in the day.
‘I did a world tour, Temptations, sometime back. When you do a world tour, I am very conscious that it should be bigger and better, more technologically advanced. It should be something that brings happiness to all the audiences who watch it. It has taken me ten years to put it together, I guess I was waiting for Abhishek and Deepika to grow up and for Vivaan to be born!
You really need a team. The first day we got together, we were working hard, with fun, even when travelling, we were all tired but still cheerful and pushing each other!’
Sharing the journey that is now culminating with the series of SLAM shows and the release of the mega movie, Happy New Year on October 23rd, Shah Rukh said that while all the actors involved had worked in many films before, Happy New Year, will remain very special because of the camaraderie of the cast and crew. ‘We will miss the madness of Farah. We would fight with her, argue with her, discuss with her, in fact, if you sometimes see Farah, Boman Irani and Abhishek Bachchan speak to each other in the lift, you would think that they were going to beat each other up!”
Farah Khan, the director, got quite emotional when speaking about the release of the film as that would mean that the team will not be able to spend as much time together.
The star cast of Happy New Year was clearly excited about bringing the show to London audiences.
For Shah Rukh, “the show has been perfected for London” while Boman said, “we have saved the best for the last!”.
Boman Irani, who excitedly exclaimed: “This might be the first show for Shah Rukh after a gap of a few years for the others, for me, it is the first show in 55 years!”
Deepika Padukone and Farah Khan, were delighted that the show could be brought to London.
“I have shot two-three movies back to back in London and now this feels like a second home. Actually, I love the city so much that if in the future I decide to settle down, I would like to live in London!”, Deepika shared. For Farah, London will always hold a special place in her heart because it was here in 1986, that she herself participated in the World Dance Championship.
The cast were delighted that the lovely Madhuri Dixit-Nene could join them for the London leg of the tour.
“It was Shah Rukh’s idea”, Farah pointed out. Shah Rukh, himself, was grateful that Madhuri has graciously accepted to be a part of the show.
‘Madhuri is the most well-loved actress here and she is a star for all of us. I think we ourselves, are most excited about Madhuri joining. As soon as it was confirmed, we were all saying that we wanted to watch madhuri’s entrance and performance! I think O2 is going to be electrifying because of her!’
Abhishek Bachchan, who was the only one to have previously performed at the O2 had some words of advice for his fellow performers.
“I have told them that the place is freezing cold! But I promise you that we will heat things up with our onstage antics!”
And that promise, they lived up to! Things got hot and how. If Madhuri , Deepika and Malaika dazzled with their beautiful dance performances, it was the duo of Farah and Boman who had the thousands watching in peals of laughter.
The men were not ones to take things easy. Vivaan started the evening on a high note with the special SLAM song while Sonu Sood and Boman Irani had the crowds cheering for them.
Shah Rukh Khan made the coolest entry suspended by cables, transcending over the O2 crowd that had been eagerly waiting for him to enthral them. The audiences screamed with joy as Shah Rukh performed to his all-time favourites from the 90s and 2000s. The surprise package for the evening actually turned out to be Junior Bachchan who got the crowd going and on their feet – whether it was his entry through the crowds or the now-famous SLAM selfie.
All in all, it was a night that will not be forgotten by the 15,000 strong crowd that had come to see their favourite stars descend upon London with all their razzmatazz. Here’s hoping the next show comes much sooner, for now we cannot wait to be SLAMMED again!