Shah Rukh Khan and Alia Bhatt in a Bollywood Hungama exclusive video. Interview with Content Head Broadband Faridoon Shahryar share their thoughts on their forthcoming film Dear Zindagi and what makes it different and endearing. Shah Rukh shares some very perceptive insights about Alia’s growth as an actor while Alia reacts to SRKs statement that ‘Alia has become too good too soon.’ Must read.
Sir, but do you feel, Alia looks like 18-19 but her maturity is way beyond her years. Do you feel that way? You’ve worked with her. She has an old- soul in her, do you feel that way?
SRK: Personally aisa nahi lagta mujhe. As an actor there’s an amazing amount of maturity or main baar baar logo se yahi kehta hoon ki actor ki jo age hoti hai us se unki acting ki maturity gauge karna bahut galat baat hai. I think woh galat fehmi hai, ki yeh young hai toh utni achi acting nahi karegi. That’s why you’ll find sometimes 7 years old kid acts so well. Because unki feeling raw and asli hoti hai aur woh us baat ko bedhadak bol sakte hai. So Alia ki ek quality hai, ki woh apne jo experiences hai aur sabke experiences hote hai sabka dil toot’ta hai sab khush hote hai, sab dukhi hote hai, chota bachcha khilone ke toy ko dekh kar khush ho jaata hai lekin khushi wahi hoti hai jo shayad tumko hoti hai romance karke ya shaadi karke ya pyaar karke,whatever. Khushi khushi hoti hai. So yeh bolna ke choti umar mein experience nahi, sabko 5-6-7 emotions aate hi hai aur I think she’s able to bring them forth and the best part is she brings them forth not like someone else you’ve seen before she bring them forth like Alia Bhatt which is new, nice and unique.
Sir, maturity I meant that maturity as a person as well. What I find fascinating and mesmerizing about her is she has unique capability to laugh at herself. I meant primarily from that, she can be quite sensitive as well, do you feel that?
SRK: I think if you are an actor of a calibre, I’ve known her now for an year and a half well enough to talk about her. I didn’t know her before that. You realize that she has had experiences, there’s a quality about her which brings this sensitivity to forth. Unki zindagi jo hui hai, usme kuch achai hai, jo aage laati hai, apne aap ko seriously nahi leti, she can laugh at herself as you said or at others which is really bad quality. Natural hai, real hai aur inshallah aise hi rahegi toh aur bhi achchi acting karegi. I find her company extremely endearing, happy and interesting. Mujhe bahut acha lagta hai inke saath waqt guzarna apart from having acted with her because she has all that. Mujhe kabhi aisa nahi laga, iska yeh matlab nahi inka old soul hai, mujhe aisa nahi laga ke main inke saath baithke guftagu nahi kar sakta because she’s of different age group. She can be who she wants to be with whoever she finds interesting enough to be with and which is a brilliant quality as a person and as an actor.
Now Alia, Mr. Khan has said, “Alia is too good too soon. I don’t want her to get trapped in just doing great acting without experiencing everything in Indian cinema. If you become too good too soon, you may have inhibitions being bad at times. It is wonderful to be bad at the time.” Do you find that apart from the movie you were learning from him, even in real life?
Alia: Absolutely and I completely agree with him, the thing is that’s the cinema I also adore, that’s the reason I wanted to become an actor at first place. Kabhi kabhi kya hota hai, what he explains, when you’re doing good-good performances, you start looking down to the films that are song and dance but actually I find they are way harder because that conviction and attitude is very rare and you can’t, it’s not everybody’s cup of tea and I’ve really seen that happen. And that’s something, strangely, my father also said to me. After he saw our episode, he said, I agree with Shah Rukh, you have to be bad. By being bad, you have to try everything out, you have to able to just do anything but just do it and give your 100% at doing it. So, I want to do that.
SRK: I don’t know if you remember your dad saying this, did he say this to me or I read it somewhere, I am not sure. Inki Highway film aayi thi, Bhatt sahib ne mujhe bola ya I was talking to him I said everybody is liking Alia in Highway. He said I’m just waiting for her to move from Highway to the main road. Highway bada khoobsurat hota hai, scenic hota hai, beautiful hota hai, we just kind of go on a drive on a highway, main road pe takleef hoti hai, traffic hoti hai, (imitates vehicle horns) sounds hote hai lekin that’s also a road you have to take kyunki zindagi mein dono roads hai na. Similarly in acting, I’m not telling her that doing commercial cinema is good or bad I’m just saying aap itne ache actor ho ki har cheez ka zayka zaroor lena. And yeah, more often than not, at least I have, she’ll do Inshallah. Go wrong in a good film also, in a bad film also, which is also alright. Yeh experiences bahut zaroori hote hai for an actor to understand their own self, limitations and goodness. So if everybody right now, praises you, is happy with you and you’re fantastic but it’s nice to go wrong too and realize for yourself where you stand from inside. Like how you say, you need to be a bad boy or girl in real life too you can’t just be goody to shoes. So in acting it’s very important to go wrong in a cinema which doesn’t belong to you. I’ve done it ki maine yeh kiya yeh meri sensibility ka hi nahi hai, main us duniya se nahi hoon and I’ve gone completely wrong on it and it’s really nice too as an actor.
The promos are wonderful of Dear Zindagi, what I personally gathered is…
SRK: What you think of the promo? Describe in three words?
I think they’re wonderful. My question was some films are not about romance, they’re about relationships and it can be any relationship. If it’s convincing and engaging enough, you would want to see it. As a viewer, I love watching movies, kabhi kabhi aisa hota hai you feel totally gripped and lost in a certain narrative. This movie looks something like this, do you feel that it’s time that Indian movies did something like this? Exploring relationships more than ke iske andar ek item hona chahiye, or it has to have some romantic angle to it.
SRK: First I tell you, every story is a love story. There is no story in this world which is not love story; it could be a love story between a man and woman, between woman and a country, sportsman and the sport, every movie, written or shown or in a poem is a love story. Love can’t be confined to a man, woman. Brother-Sister, Maa-Beta, this is a love story. This is love story which is not a man-woman love story so to say, though I’m a man, she’s a woman but yeah there’s love between us, a relationship between us. So is film ke andar jo baatein hi mujhe badi khoobsurat lagti hai. Isme sirf ek child ki baatein nahi hai, uski gharwalo ki baatein bhi hai. It’s a point of view. Sometimes when I was seeing this film myself it’s like oh she is so confused but I realized the confusion sometimes comes from the parents and her parents don’t realize. So everybody, her parents, friends, professional colleagues, it’s a beautiful life which is encountering issues and problems and dealing with them ourselves. Not giving you a dramatic ending to it ke aisa hoga. Second thing jo tumne pucha ke is it time Indian cinema is going to change, please don’t judge the change in life, storytelling, cinema in one film. I think the beauty of Indian cinema is everything co-exists. So there’s this film, Dear Zindagi, which they call slice of life, which is beautiful in its own way. Maybe we’ll do another film which may not be slice of life which may be completely over the top and madness. All co-exists, that’s the beauty of storytelling countries and that’s why we make so many films kyunki itni saari kahaniya kehe ko hai. Main bada sa darr jaata hoon jab log bolte hai cinema changing, change nahi ho sakta yaar. Hum sab logo ke alag alag taste hai. Aapko yeh achi lagati hai, attractive lagti hai, inka bhi bahut acha taste hai, mujhe ekdum pagal, nonsensical picture achi lagti hai but who are you or me to judge me? So I think all of them will co-exist. No change is coming, the change is that cinema is so varied and that’s a great change and that’s how it should be.