Shah Rukh Khan is an Indian actor, film producer, and television personality. Referred to in the media as the “Badshah of Bollywood”, “King of Bollywood” and “King Khan”, he has appeared in more than 80 Bollywood films, and earned numerous accolades, including 14 Filmfare Awards.
Below is the full text of his speech titled “Life Lessons” that he delivered at the University of Edinburgh.
Dr. Shah Rukh Khan – Bollywood Actor
Thank you. Thank you very much everyone. It’s a great pleasure today here. Thank you.
All right. How this works is that I have to give you a lecture. So I prepared… it’s very thick but it’s because the font is big. I will go on and on until you guys get bored, you can stop me up and ask questions or – OK.
First of all, it’s an honor for me to receive this doctorate today. So thank you everyone who’s involved with this.
And “Humbled” is a word often used by people in my profession. You meet actors and they’ll give, “I am very humbled, I am very humbled”. We also know.
I dislike the hypocritical, obsequious connotation of it in these contexts so I’m not going to use it, but I will say that such occasions have a way of putting me right in my place – which is right there, so thank you everyone for putting me in my place.
I do get invited to conferences and inaugurations now and then to speak. And when I receive the invite, I also receive my brief. It’s usually about “success” and my “tips” on it — not my toes — those are covered by “I will never show my toes” clause in my contracts. They are very ugly. And it’s my attempt at gender equality.
My co-actresses have no cleavage clause; I have no toes one.
Most people believe Bollywood stars aren’t insightful about anything other than the fateful occurrences which made them stars in the first place.
But I’ve had the odd divergence from being taken for stupid though. Recently I got an email from the International Association of Advertising. And they said, “Dear Mr. Khan, the advertising community would like you to come and address them on Globalization and disruptive marketing”.
And I spent the next 4 hours on Google trying to assimilate the “disruptiveness” of innovating a product to match its market. But it was one of those rare days when even Google can’t help you. A day when you need to leave Google and ask for deliverance from God.
But I have a film releasing soon, so I don’t want to take extra favors from God before the film releases. So I chose business over knowledge.
So I did the next best thing. I sat on my IO Hawk – have you guys seen that segue thing, yeah – so I went on my IO Hawk and told everybody, a gathering like yours, that there is nothing I can tell you that you already don’t know.
Now, people when they are told they are smart, they like it. You are such an august gathering of people and…blah blah. Instead let me entertain you because you all deserve a break, and before the organizers could interject I started thrusting my pelvic into their faces and broke out into the one and only intellectual thing I know how to do… The Lungi Dance.
So I got away with it without being “humbled” — it always pays to be a better dancer than the advertisers — and what’s more, they seemed to have a good time.