Idol Chatter: Saawariya Stars Ranbir Kapoor and Sonam Kapoor – 2

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IshqInABackpack: Saawariya Idol Chatter: Saawariya
May 2008
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Growing up Bollywood must have been a trip. Were you close to your famous fathers?

SONAM: My parents gave me everything but they also ensured that I was brought up as normally as possible. My parents are a unit and they make joint decisions. At the end of the day my dad comes home and leaves his work behind, so there has never been any conflict with that. From my mother we learned to be sensitive to world issues and this awareness was instilled in us. I studied theatre arts, English and History and hence, have a good perspective on the world and larger issues and try not to get carried away with the smaller stuff. Even though my father used to work three shifts, there hasn’t been a time when he wasn’t around for the important or even the small intimate moments of my life or that of my siblings. He is great at pep talks and instills us with enthusiasm through both the low points and high points. I couldn’t have a better father. I’ve never seen my dad work, but I’ve heard some amazing stories of his professionalism, hard work and brilliance. I hope I can be as honest in my trade as he is. I also hope the discipline that he has instilled in all three of us serves us in our respective career paths.

RANBIR: My mother [actress Neetu Singh] is the brightest spot in my life. I cannot see beyond her and everything that makes her happy makes me happy. She is always thinking of us. I am very protective of her and don’t like any one judging her, which is why I don’t see her movies. dAs for my dad, there was a point when I didn’t know that he was an actor because we were always shielded from the set. While I was growing up we didn’t have a close a relationship because he was always away working. Actually, I assisted him on his film Aa Ab Laut Chalen by default because my ICSE Board exams were over and I had the usual holiday break after that. Dad was shooting in America and he said “Why don’t you come along? You can take a holiday and can assist me at the same time.” So, it was a mixture of both, and that is the first time we really starting bonding as two adults. I don’t know if I am as good as him. I also don’t know if I can live up to those expectations and can even be compared to him. Maybe I have a style of my own. I don’t think he had a style of acting which can be copied. A lot of people say I sound like him and smile like him. I think I have learnt more from him off screen. I am waiting for my father’s reaction [to Saawariya] because he is completely honest, even if he is talking about his own family. He will call a spade a spade, so he won’t hide whether he loves or hates me in the film.

Okay, so it must be asked—which of your father’s films made you proud to call him papa?

SONAM: I’ve seen all of them, and my favorites are Pukar, Lamhe, Mr.India, Woh Saat Din, Parinda, Tezaab—I love all of them actually.

RANBIR: I would have to say that Zamaane Ko Dikhana Hai is my favorite Rishi Kapoor film. Not many people have seen the film but comedic timing of it is excellent.

You’ve experienced a bit of fame already, but it’s about to hit you full-force. Ready?

SONAM: I don’t know if I’m mentally ready, but I did choose this and I am aware of the so called dark side. I also know that as people in the public eye we have responsibilities towards the public because in some small way we can influence them with our actions. So the only way to face this so called dark side is to be honest with yourself and do the right thing.

RANBIR: I know people expect a lot from me and I am confident that I will live up to their expectations. It’s obvious that people will compare me to my dad and granddad. I don’t see it as a burden and I look forward to the responsibility it involves. I am happy to put up with their expectations and hopefully I can meet them. Although I’m aware of the responsibility, I don’t think about it all the time. If I did, I’d feel bogged down and might get depressed. I’m driven by my own ambition to do my best possible work. However, I’m the biggest fan of my grandfather and father. I’ve a huge portrait of my grandfather in my bedroom. It’s a collage of his face from all of his films. It reminds me of where I come from and where I have to go.

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