The world waited to see what happened on October 19, the official release date of Student Of The Year. In the next 24 hours, this is what I get to see on my Twitter handle - 'Please tell Varun to join Twitter, please!' - 'I have him on my walls. I want him in my life now. Help me please' - 'My crush of the year is Varun Dhawan'. The actor must've longed for a day like this. But now I'm sure his curiosity is just building up. But this happened yesterday. A few weeks ago, he shifts around in the chair he'd been reclining in quite comfortably in a way that suggests he can't quite believe he's being informed that in a few days he will be every girl's newest obsession and every man's envy. He is also quick to stress that he doesn't want to snatch too much praise for himself "It's too early to say that. I'm just an average looking actor", he replies. As of today, Varun Dhawan is definitely feeling the aftershocks from his increasing-by-the-second fan club. But at an arm's length from where I was seeing him, I could hear thunderous applause from the crowd as he kept talking about Student Of The Year and his fellow colleagues. Dhawan is terribly engaging - wise-cracking and serious, confident and relaxed. But with an air of vulnerability, discipline and self control. Not to forget a bit mad sometimes. Yes, his dream is to make an entry like what Govinda did in the song - 'Paka Chika Paka Raja Babu'.
In this Part 2 exclusive, I bring you Varun Dhawan's philosophy when it comes to cinema, his wish to be a part of cult cinema, the crazy fan following he craves for and his fanboy film Raja Babu.
Devansh Patel: Do you know your fans are really upset about the fact that you aren't on Facebook and Twitter?
Varun Dhawan: I am not on Twitter but I was on Facebook when I was a student. In fact, during my whole student life while I was in Nottingham I used to chat with girls from different parts of the world.
DP: Damn! It's like Hot or Not game.
VD: (laughs) Correct. In fact, during my student life, it was important for me to be on social networking sites. There's so much to learn, so many friends you make for life.
DP: You know I've never seen a launch given to any debutant in my living life. Not even Ranbir got it during Saawariya.
VD: Well, thank you. I think, the entire credit for this has to go to Karan Johar. As for Ranbir, he is a great actor and he too has a great launch. I recall posters of Saawariya in the Tube Stations in Central London and I called him to find out what the film was all about.
DP: Now that the generation has changed, thanks to the technology, the message is reaching out thick and fast. It's like you are the pin up even before the release.
VD: No man! I don't think so. I have to prove double of what I have in SOTY in my second film. So there's an uphill climb. Hrithik Roshan came to our editing studio during Kaho Naa Pyaar Hai and literally the whole of Juhu was outside the studio. That's the stardom I am looking for and until I get it, I won't believe that I have a huge fan following. I've seen it with my own eyes. That was his first film. My father told me Kumar Gaurav too had that fan following after his first film. It's a good take-off I think.
DP: A few top writers, producer and directors are talking highly of you and your talent in SOTY. They unanimously said, "Varun is the guy to look out for". Rensil D'Silva included. So may expectations. Time to answer them buddy!
VD: Rensil hasn't told me this (laughs). I don't think I can answer them back. What to answer them? There's so much stuff out there - ideologies, views, etc, the minute you answer back, things start to connect and it begins to get messy. My work will eventually speak on my behalf I feel. People don't give a s***, no matter who your father or mother is. If they like you, they'll accept you or they'll reject you that very minute.
DP: But this industry is more about sustenance.
VD: You are right. I saw the sparkle in your eyes when you started talking about Barfi. For me it's about that. It's about cinema. It's about that art. After everyone's hard work has been put in, the film is out for the public to see. They should then feel the magic we've created. It should feel like Cinema Paradiso.
DP: You are nowhere sounding like the character you play in SOTY.
VD: (laughs) Ok, let me tell you how Rohan Nanda, the character I play in the film is like. He is complex yet very simple. He is at the age where he's got everything too soon but from within he thinks he has nothing. In reality, he wants love and not money. It's a human emotion. He wants to start a heavy metal band and that's his aspiration. For the role, I did play the drums and the guitar after taking some lessons. Shakun Batra taught me a bit of guitar.
DP: Success will never go above your head, will it Varun? Tomorrow you may win awards, get the acclaim, etc.
VD: Never ever. But what is success? What is super-stardom? Is it the amount of girls who are going to tear their t-shirts off for you? Is it the number of fake friends that you carry along or is it that honest film you make? I think it's the latter. It'll be the last day of me the day ego goes in my head. I would like to be a part of cult cinema. That's success for me. When I saw Dil Chahta Hai, I thought every other film was s***. But there is a film that comes once in a decade and changes everything. Barfi did just that. I was thinking how will SOTY look now post Barfi.
DP: Who are your favorite filmmakers?
VD: I love Tim Burton, Vishal Bhardwaj, Christopher Nolan, Guru Dutt and Raj Kumar Hirani and before you ask me the next question, my favorite movies are Guide, Kaagaz Ke Phool, American Psycho, The Doors, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai and Raja Babu (laughs). When Govinda tore the poster of Michael Jackson's BAD and did 'Paka Chik Paka Raja Babu', I went crazy. I am a big fan of Govinda.
DP: The way you talk and come across, I have this gut feeling that masses are going to love you.
VD: I hope so too man! I hope they love SOTY. But that's an individual opinion. Yes, they will be able to relate to my character. That's what an actor's job is. I want to touch everyone's heart. That is why the three Khans' are where they are - SRK, Salman and Aamir.
Click here to read Part 1 of the interview