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Kajol is returning to the screen after five years with Dilwale. That’s a long time for a leading actress to be away from the screen. But Kajol doesn’t do things by the book. She never has. In a previous interview, Kajol stated that she didn’t think she could ever act in a Rohit Shetty film, despite her daughter wanting her to take up one. With Dilwale, that has changed. Her she talks about the film, her co-star SRK and her equation with the director. Read on for excerpts...
Enjoying the promotions?
No, I don’t really like travelling away from my kids so much and the promotions have been really hectic. We are taking regular breaks in between so it hasn’t been so bad as yet. It’s going to get really bad now in the coming weeks. Shah Rukh told me today, ‘Just go home and sleep properly tonight so that tomorrow, I can really work you hard.’ (Laughs)
The director is the most important thing for you before agreeing to do a film, correct?
(Cuts in) Yes, I feel I cannot spend eight-nine months of my life on film sets working with a director I don’t get along well. I need to like the director and be comfortable with him before I decide to sign his film. That’s always a prerequisite for me. I don’t see the point in just doing a film knowing that you won’t get to enjoy being on sets and shooting.
You’ve known Rohit for the longest time now as Ajay’s friend. Was the equation on the set different?
Not at all. I believe that the director is the captain of the ship. So it’s not about Rohit being different but I am always different on the sets. I am very clear that I will not disrespect the director at any point and time. Yes, I might make fun of him at times (laughs) but I won’t disagree or disrespect him at all on the sets. So the equation with Rohit was very comfortable and I think Rohit knows me very well. So he knows how to work with me and it has been good fun.
We hear you were the last person to come on board for Dilwale. Comment.
I was the last one to say yes to the film because I was the last one to be approached for the film, I think. I pretty much told them, then and there, when they narrated the script that yeah okay, I agree with it and I’m doing it.
How much has changed in the last five years that you didn’t face the camera?
There isn’t really that much of a difference in the way that the film is shot. The changes are in the promotions. (Laughs) When we were promoting it today, I felt like, Oh my God, I have never promoted anything as much as this one. I believe the promotions of 20 films put together is what I’m doing for this film (Laughs). I don’t think I have talked so much before. My throat is sore. (Smiles)
You always said you can never do a Golmaal. Having done Dilwale, are you now more open to the idea?
Rohit’s films are a brand on their own and have a grandness to them. But at the same time, I would not have done this film if I thought my character was not worth it or if I felt at any point it wasn’t exciting me. For me, the script and my character need to be worth the time I am away from my kids and spending on the sets. It needs to be something worth doing. It cannot be a fantastic script with a mediocre character or a fantastic character with a mediocre script. It has to be a combination of both. And at the same time, it needs to have a good director and a good producer and a decent co-star. Everything makes a difference and everything contributes to making it a better film that you would like to do. I still don’t know whether I would do a Golmaal 1, 2 or 3 but I’m definitely doing a Dilwale again.
You and SRK are considered the golden pair…
(Cuts in) Let me tell you, we have never thought about it this way. Rather, we have never even give it a thought. (Smiles)
SRK says that the best part about you two is you guys believe in doing the ordinary which becomes special. Agree?
He’s overstating the case (Laughs). We just simply choose films together, randomly. It’s not at all planned. We love working together. When we do a scene together, it’s very instinctive, very spontaneous and not rehearsed at all. That in itself is very natural and sensible. That is maybe what people call chemistry because I never sat down to analyse why it works and why it doesn’t.
Any changes in SRK over the years you have known him?
He’s still a pure actor on sets. Pure means that he’s 100 per cent an actor when he’s on the sets shooting. I feel he’s grown a lot. I have never seen anybody work so hard to retain and keep his stardom and grow 100 folds the way he has. He works very, very hard.
Dilwale is already in the safe zone. Knowing that the film will open big at the BO, does the release day still excite you?
I have never waited for Santa Claus so much in my life. (Laughs loudly) I really am waiting for December 25 to come soon. Santa, I know what I want for Christmas this year!
What do you want?
Of course, I want a holiday. I totally deserve one this Christmas! (Laughs) And of course, I want this film to do very, very well and break every record that we have in our country today.
In an interview, SRK joked that you will be the next Singham and Ajay sir will lose his job…
(Laughs loudly) No chance! Me and Singham can never happen.
Who will work with Rohit sooner — you or Ajay?
I really have no clue about it. Maybe, it will be Shah Rukh again. You never know!
Do you miss romancing Ajay on screen?
I should be asking you this question — Do you miss me romancing him on screen? I romance him every day! Every morning, every day, every night. I do the real thing, so no, I don’t. (Laughs)
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