With due apologies to Aamir Khan, Shah Rukh Khan and Salman Khan, the biggest Khan superstar of India is Taimur Ali Khan. As he turns all of 2 on December 20, his proud paparazzi-wary parents have whisked him away to Africa far away from the cameras which love him the way only a true star is loved. At 2, little Tim (as he is affectionately called by his father) is fully aware of his best camera angles. He calls out to the paparazzi who adore him and always ensure his comfort before clicking.
What he wears and the random words that lisp out of his lips become the trending topics of the day. And the child loves every bit of the attention. So is Taimur, my most favourite member of the Pataudi clan after his grandmother Sharmila Tagore, the most popular star-kid in the world? Tom Cruise’s daughter Suri’s popularity when she was a kid, comes to mind. The little girl was followed around by the paparazzi to describe her clothes, shoes, purse. In no time at all little Suri acquired adult mannerisms and turned into quite a poseur.
In spite of all the media attention, Taimur remains blissfully uncorrupted. Yes, he loves the flashbulbs and the media attention. But he doesn’t strike poses. Not as yet. At 2, Taimur is a force that the photographs cannot do without. According to glam shooters in Mumbai, a picture of Taimur fetches a higher price than that of Salman Khan. And Taimur effortlessly lords over the below-5 brigade of star kids. His popularity exceeds that of Aamir Khan’s son Azad and Shah Rukh’s AbRam.
Such is his popularity in the public domain that Taimur needs constant surveillance. He is no danger of any kind. It’s just that he attracts way too much attention for a child his age. His parents fear their Tim may soon lose his innocence. Or else, the paparazzi may soon lose interest in Tim, and move on to another star-kid. Too young understood how the media operates Taimur may lose all the attention overnight without knowing why they’ve disappeared.
So let’s all think only positive thoughts for the Golden Nawab. Dear Taimur, Tim, Timmy, Tim-Tim…may you shine brighter than both your parents.
Oops, you already do!