'THE ONLY THING GOING FOR ME IS MY TALENT': SHAHID KAPOOR
BY ADIL RASHEED (Staff Reporter) / 17 January 2005
The hottest pin-up of Bollywood is also the hardest to pin down. Shahid Kapoor, still in his wonder years, comes across as a remarkably level-headed man.
Apparently unaffected by the fame and the controversies that surround him, this new hunk on the block wants to be in for the long haul. City Times conducted a reality check on the rising star at a recent shooting of the film Milenge Milenge, at the Jumeirah beach in Dubai. This is what we found out.
What is the secret of your amazing confidence?
I frankly do not know about all that. You see, I come from a middle-class family. I do not have anyone backing me. I am very young and am on my own. The only thing going for me is my talent. That is the only positive I am banking on. And I know whatever I do will be printed forever. So I have to give it my very best.
You are a good actor. But critics say your performances appear too studied. You seem to be working too hard.
Do I! (laughs) I'll keep it in mind.
You seem to be totally uninfluenced by the style of acting of your parents (Pankaj Kapoor and Neelima Azim).
The credit goes to my parents. They allowed me to be my own person. They trusted me and never pushed me into doing anything. Again, I am a very individual kind of a person. I like making mistakes and learning from them. Probably, these factors combined to shape my style of acting.
Some actors want to play larger-than-life persona roles and seek superstardom. They believe in building their own personal image. Others prefer getting into the skin of their characters and want to be known as great actors. How do you want to chart your future?
Nobody can plan becoming a superstar. It's something that just happens. One should try to be good at one's work and leave the rest to destiny. I do not think one can plan and plot one's way to superstardom.
What style of acting would you choose?
It is too early for me to speak about any style I would choose in the future. Right now, I am discovering myself and this is just the beginning.
You have not been like other beginners. You don't sign up to any offer that comes your way. In fact you have declined many big-budget films so early in your career. So what is the criteria for doing a film?
I would like to say here that I may have made wrong decisions in turning down some projects. Probably, I'll learn more with experience. However, I strongly feel that you should believe in what you do. You should love what you do. And filmmaking is a long process. It usually takes upto 6 to 8 months for a film to complete. If you do not feel comfortable doing the film at the outset, you should not do it.
In the light of the current controversy do you think you and Kareena over-reacted to the issue by filing a case against the people who took the pictures?
Sorry, I cannot answer that question.
Do you intend to take the case to the very end or would you settle for a settlement?
As I said I cannot answer the question. You would come to know as and when things happen.
From what age did you start dreaming about becoming an actor?
That's a difficult one. Very early in life. I think soon after I outgrew the typical dream any kid has of becoming a cricketer or an air force pilot. But I seriously started working towards becoming an actor a year before the filming of Ishq Vishq. I had this one-year period to prepare for the movie and to learn the tricks of the trade.
People compare you with Shah Rukh Khan. Do you study his style?
I think when you are in the film industry you study the acting of a lot of stars. But it is very unfair to compare me with such a stalwart. On the other hand, we are also contemporaries so the comparison is unreasonable.
Do other facets of filmmaking interest you? Do you feel like exploring the other aspects of this wonderful medium?
I am currently totally obsessed with acting. There are too many avenues one could explore, but I do not to end up being a jack of all trades. I think it would take me at least ten years to understand acting. The journey is not all about success, it is about growth.