It’s no news that Ajay Devgn does almost all of his stunts himself, but in Milan Luthria’s Baadshaho there was one stunt that he found extremely challenging and complex. Designed by German action director Ramazan Bulut, the stunt required him to slide under an armoured truck. Though all safety precautions were in place, the stunts were quite challenging.
There was a gap between the bottom of the truck was just enough for him to fit in while on the other side of him were rapidly rotating tyres. Right next to his face were the jagged rotating edges of the differential of the truck, an engine element prominent in armoured trucks of the 70’s. The sequence required him to simultaneously drag his feet on the ground, pull himself towards the front of the truck, and look up towards the camera which could have him injure his head.
Though Milan was insistent he tilts his head up only as much as was completely safe, he was not prepared for the extent Ajay would go to. He gave a terrific shot with superb presence of mind, which is the most essential thing in action. But because of the narrow gaps and the rotating wheels and blades, Ajay was having a claustrophobic attack. He was getting very uncomfortable and also beginning to get disoriented.
The moment Milan sensed this, he realised the shot was canned and he yelled at the top of his lungs for an immediate cut and to bring the truck to a halt. All was well. But when the harness crew went under the truck to help him out, a part of his leather jacket got stuck on a part of the undercarriage. This made the claustrophobia worse, and it’s probably the only time Ajay yelled to the crew to hurry up. He was out after a few agonising minutes, and there was sense the relief in the crew. He brushed it off, but when Milan looked around, he could see some of the crew members extremely emotional.
Ajay has a knack of connecting with the crew like very few actors can, and one could see the power of that connection that day.