Anil Kapoor is on a high. The actor hadn’t had a release in quite a while and is upbeat about his upcoming release Dil Dhadakne Do. The actor, who will soon start shooting for the second season of his television series, 24, spoke to correspondent Gaurav Sharma on films, life, international projects and more.
How have you been?
I am great. Thanks. I am really excited and looking forward to a lot of things, especially my upcoming film Dil Dhadakne Do. I am actually enjoying life. There are a lot of new things happening in my life and career, so I am excited.
You look full of energy?
(Laughs) I think that’s what has kept me going. I have always believed in doing work and my work keeps me going. This is something that I have always maintained. I always like being occupied with something, be it here in the Hindi film industry or in the West. I also take a lot of care of my health. I try to stay fit. I am an early riser and I think staying fit is very important because we have very gruelling working hours.
You haven’t been seen in Hindi films in quite some time. Dil Dhadakne Do is your first release in quite some time.
That’s because I am doing so many things. It’s not just Hindi films any more. I am doing television- both Indian and English shows in the West. I also did MI4 in between. These things take a lot of planning. I am happy that my work is being recognised and people are enjoying my work.
Is this the best phase of your career?
I don’t know if this is the best phase or not but the last 10 years or so definitely have been the most interesting and challenging years in my career. I have tried and done project, which I really liked and at the same time the audiences too appreciated my work. I ventured into television during this period and I am overwhelmed by the response I got. 24 changed the entire concept of television viewing in India.
The audience is impatiently waiting for the second season of 24. When do you plan to start that?
(Smiles) I know and I am equally impatient. In fact, we made the first season and wanted to see the audience reaction. We had initially thought that the show would be liked by the youngsters but I went and met people who were in their sixties, who too told me that they liked the show. These are the same set of people who so long have been watching daily soaps on Indian television but they really liked 24. We are equally hopeful about the second season of 24. I have quite a few projects on hand and I am trying to balance things.
What attracted you to Dil Dhadakne Do?
There are many reasons that attract you to a script. In this case, I wanted to work with Zoya Akhtar. We all know the kind of films she makes… at least I have a fair idea about her kind of films. She is definitely one of the most talented persons today and I like her style of filmmaking. This is a film I really wanted to do and I thoroughly enjoyed doing it. We were to shoot in a cruise ship and I initially though it would be a very hectic and boring experience. But I am not only grateful to Zoya but every actor…Farhan (Khan), Ranveer (Singh), Priyanka (Chopra), Anushka (Sharma) and everyone else for making the entire shooting a great experience. It is after a long time I really enjoyed myself.
You play father to Ranveer Singh and Priyanka Chopra.
(Smiles) Yes, I am sporting grey hair in the film. I am playing their father, who is a business tycoon and a no-nonsense man. I play a patriarch, who has the final say in the family. It is after a long time I am playing such a role. I last played a patriarch in Virasaat, that too in the second half.
In fact Ranveer has gone on records saying that it was his dream come true moment when he first shot with you.
(Laughs) I share similar feelings. I must say he is great fun to work with. He is full of energy and a prankster. This film has a great set of actors but I would say Ranveer is probably one person I think who is very promising. He is a talented actor and I thoroughly enjoyed working with him.
Have you become choosy over the years?
Not really. I am doing quite a few things internationally, so I haven’t been able to do too many films in Bollywood. The working styles in India and in the West are completely different. In the last few years I have done one film a year, at the most two. In fact, that’s what everyone is doing these days.
Trans World Features (TWF)/TCN