Star of the season – Ranbir Kapoor Interview

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Ranbir Kapoor. Photo: Special Arrangement Bagging most of the Best Actor awards this season, Ranbir Kapoor is still riding high on the success of Imtiaz Ali’s “Rockstar”. The going is really good for this star son, who has a formidable line-up of to-be-released films and a natural romance with the camera. The actor talks about playing Jordan in “Rockstar”, his relationship with his father, the inimitable Rishi Kapoor and why he is not a part of the hyped 100-crore cinema club.

You seem to have rocked all award functions.

I can take all the credit. If I have the won the Best Actor award and if people like me as an actor, I need to acknowledge the contributions of the directors, cinematographers, writers, singers, co-stars … everybody.

But post-“Rockstar”, you are being hailed as young hot star of Bollywood.

I am happy my work is being appreciated. But I don’t think I am a huge star yet. All these tags don’t matter. They are frivolous terms. Of course they do encourage the actors to perform better, but you cannot afford to get carried away by them. You are good as long as good roles come to you.

Has your decision to go in for meaningful roles such as the one in the forthcoming “Barfi” or “Wake Up Sid” or “Rockstar” make you miss out on the much-hyped 100-crore club of the film industry?

I don’t think so. To me, “Wake Up Sid”, “Rocket Singh”, “Rockstar” and “Barfi!” are all engaging, entertaining films. I don’t see them as arthouse cinema. That fine line between arthouse and commercial cinema has diminished. If you believe in the story and the director’s vision, it can help you get there. Of course presence of a star has its advantages. For instance “Chak De! India” may wouldn’t have done so well if it had starred a newcomer instead of Shah Rukh Khan. As actors it is also exciting to try new genres. But at the same time one should be aware of one’s strengths and limitations. I cannot do a ‘Singham’ or a ‘Dabangg’ because I think I will fail. I don’t have that persona to carry it off. I could play Jordan because I know that there is a director like Imtiaz Ali who will make me play something convincingly and who will inspire me to give my best. That is how I can move forward, with the help of good directors and good characters. So I can’t really rely on a movie that relies on me. I need to rely on the director and the movie.

Did you internalise the pain and pathos that you projected onscreen as your character, Jordan?

It is not that we did this film very seriously. The entire film was made with feeling. I was in love with everything in this film. I was in love with Imtiaz, the script, the character, the music, Irshad bhai, Mohit’s voice, Nargis, everybody who was related to this film. There was a lot of love. We believed in Imtiaz’s vision and we just went with it. We had a great time shooting for it. But after the film got over, it left me empty. For the next two-three months, I was like a vegetable sitting at home. This film has given me much more than anything that I have got in the last 28 years of my life.

Would you like to work with Imtiaz again?

Absolutely. I like him, I care for him. I think we will always be there for each other. Once you have that trust, you are bound to do good work because you stop worrying about other things.

Does the huge Kapoor legacy weigh on you subconsciously or do you draw on it?

Yes, I am very proud of the family that I come from. We have been contributing to Indian cinema for more than 80 years, but I don’t have a chip on my shoulder. Yes, I feel responsible that I have to make a name for myself. I want to be called as Ranbir Kapoor, an individual. I want to make my father proud. I want to put in that much of hard work, I don’t take my work for granted.

How much do you draw from your father as an actor?

My father is a very passionate man. He is my favourite actor, I am heavily inspired by him in everything that I do. But he lets me be. He never interferes in my work. I now feel like spending more time with my father.

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