She has been in the news almost daily for the last six months without having a single release during this period. It all started with the super-duper success of her last release Jab We Met, which catapulted her to the top league. Post that she has been riding high in both her professional and personal life. With looks to die for and a pencil-thin figure, Kareena Kapoor is surely the flavour of the season. Now, the million-dollar babe is all set to re-enforce her numero uno status with her latest release Tashan, which opens across cinema halls this Friday. We caught up with Bebo and found out about her Tashan.
What do you think about the music of Tashan?
I think Vishal-Shekhar have done a great job. It's very fun and youthful; it's keeping the script of the film in mind. I think my favourite song is 'Challiya'. I think I am being a bit selfish because it's my song but the way we have shot it in Greece is fantastic and I think that's the best song according to me in the movie. After that is 'Dil Haara'; it's a song with me and Saif which is also shot in Greece, at fantastic locations and it's a great love song, so I think I am partial towards these two. The music is great.
What was it about this film that made you decide to do it?
I think it's a tailor made role for any actress. I think I am extremely lucky to get this role. It's like a hero's role, it has action, romance, song, dance everything in it besides which I think it has a lot of closeness to me, the kind of girl she is, very headstrong, knows her emotions. I love the role, I love the character, and I think it's a great package of this huge commercial movie and being the only girl in it, I think I am extremely lucky to be getting this role.
Can you tell us something about the character you are playing?
My character name is Pooja Singh in the film. She is a complex character. It's very different for a girl to play; I have never played a role like this before basically following her emotions, doing the right thing but of course very sharp at the same time. The reason she is sharp is because of the circumstances she has gone through. So whatever she does in the film has a very powerful reason behind it, so it's a strong character.
Can you tell us how was the experience of working with Anil Kapoor?
I think with Anilji it's the greatest experience ever because he knows me as a kid. He is like family to me, my whole family and his family is really close. I think he is one of India's finest actors I learnt a lot working with him. The way he has played this character, he's made this movie, it's just unbelievable. Every time I work with him, my mouth is like left open see him perform.
Can you tell us how what was your experience working with Akshay Kumar again?
I have done about nine movies with Akshay and I have known him since he has done his first film. When he gave his first shot, I was behind the camera so that's the relationship I have with Akshay, it's an emotional relationship. I am most comfortable with Akshay Kumar as a co-star maybe because he has seen me in my school uniform with two pigtails hanging around so it's a relationship which I think you feel really close to. As of today he is completely rocking, he's the shinning star of Bollywood. It feels great because I have been with him through the journey of his career and I feel really happy. He plays a pivotal part in this film which is a great role for him and I think working with Akshay for me is always fun and games, it's great. You never realize when the shooting began and ended. Throughout my career, I think I have enjoyed working with Akshay Kumar the most and I hope to continue working with him in the rest of my career.
Lastly, Saif, it must have provided a lot of entertainment. How was it working with him?
Saif is one of the most respected actors. As an actress myself, I respect him the most as an actor, he's one of India's finest actors. I think he can do any role and the way he has played this role is just unbelievable. The kind of nuances he adds to his character, the way he speaks and modulates his voice I think you can just learn so much from him besides being a fun loving person. It's so nice and warm to work with him as a co-star. I get really intrigued when I get to learn something from an actor I work with because when you are working on a set, two actors should connect, two actors should be learning things from each other and I think Saif is one actor that I have really learnt a lot from. The way he is so spontaneous, the way he makes a shot appear so natural, he makes the dialogue so natural is just unbelievable. I have never seen an actor like him before. I absolutely love working with him and I hope to do many more movies with him.
Vishal-Shekhar's music has always been a killer. Your comments on them.
Vishal Shekhar, this is the first time I have worked with them in a film. I loved their music in Yash Raj's earlier film Salaam Namaste. I think it was great. I used to listen to the title track all the time. I think Vishal-Shekhar have this quality of adding a lot of youth to their songs. The youth of India really connect with their kind of music and I think with this film they have done a range from 'Dil Hara' to 'Challiya' to 'Falak' which is also a very nice song which has Akshay and me in it. I think they have covered an entire spectrum and done a great job.
The look in this film is most talked about. Can you tell us something about your experience working with Aki Narula?
I am really excited about the look of this film. I think words fall short to praise the kind of talent Aki has because I think as a designer he is one of the most talented designers we have. He gets into the skin of each and every character; he knows exactly what to give when and in which scene. I think he is just fantastic and what he has done for me in this movie is commendable he just changed my entire look; it is something that has never been seen before. I think the whole idea of keeping it very grunge and rugged for me has really worked because I don't think an Indian actress has really done that on screen before. Normally, an Indian actress is always very particular about looking beautiful, looking really perfect and her hair being in place and not looking messy. But in this film we have brought a lot of sexiness for the character through the clothes, make up and the hair. We have all worked together as a team to give me a unique look. I am really excited and I think Aki has done a phenomenal job; he's going to win a lot of accolades for this film for sure.
Is there any particular outfit in the film you would like to wear otherwise?
In my song 'Challiya', there is a change of 10 costumes. I would like to wear each one of them even if I go out for a dinner or a party because it's going to take on to the youth like anything. Aki has just put a lot of things together like shoes, accessories. I love Pooja's signature outfit - A white shirt with nice jeans and boots. I think I live in that always and I think that's why I like those outfit's the best.
Did you have to take any special training for the film considering that it is an action film?
Before this film started, I kind of knew that for this character to look different from what I have done before, I have to train really hard to change the shape of my body which I wanted to do. A lot of actresses abroad work on one film at a time, change their look for a particular film body wise people loose weight, put on weight. For Tashan, it was a conscious effort to change my body structure and work towards it. I wanted to look a bit lean because there is a lot of action in this movie and I think a lean girl doing action always looks much better. So I trained really hard for about eight to nine months and was on a strict diet regime for this film. But the lean look is only for Tashan, that's the only way this will look different from any other film. Adi, Victor, Aki all of us sat together and thought that it would be great if I could loose weight and get into shape and the response has been phenomenal. I am actually enjoying it I have got used to it.
Share your experience working with Vijay Krishna Acharya fondly called Victor.
Victor is a fantastic writer. The way he writes is unbelievable and I think to be a great director you need to be a great writer. The greatest of directors are fantastic writers. The way Victor has etched this film, written the dialogues, and written the entire screenplay is just great. He knows the pulse of the audiences and what gets them. Apart from making such a huge commercial film, he's made it very real, he wants his characters, his actors, the ambience around him to be very real which I think is great about Victor. I love that because I think the more real it is, the more you can connect with the audiences. So I love that quality in Victor. I think he gives his actors a lot of space, of course, he tells them what he needs, what he wants, and then he lets the actor flow. He is very open minded which I think is great. I have worked with a lot of directors but thinking that this is Victor's first film you cannot believe it, he's like a seasoned director. He is one director to really watch out for. I would like to work with him again; I had the time of my life shooting this film. Besides being a wonderful director he is a wonderful human being and I hope this film is a huge blockbuster for Victor because he is really great.
It must have been phenomenal shooting in Greece and Ladakh.
Shooting this film has been a marathon. It's been tedious but great fun because the team has been so much fun; we have been like a unit, a real family. We travelled to Greece, Ladakh, Jaisalmer, Kerala, Haridwar, so it's going to look like a really beautiful film because the spectrum is like all over from Ladakh to Kerala to Greece which is really exciting. Greece was beautiful, it was freezing cold. I have given a shot where they have put me in minus degree temperature water, which I think is the best shot in the film but let people see it. Ladakh was heavy terrain it was tough to shoot but like I said, when you are working with a family, when you are doing great scenes, saying some great lines, you are enjoying your work so much that nothing seems tough anymore. The oxygen level was low in Ladakh, so it was tough but we still use to train, that is the dedication Akshay, Saif and I had, because we love the film, Tashan.
What is your Tashan quotient?
My Tashan lies in the way I am, my attitude towards life, towards work, towards people. I think Tashan basically means attitude for me.
Any one memorable incident during the shoot of the film
It's tough to say because there have been so many memorable incidents. It is a truly special film. Shooting in Ladakh, Greece and Jaisalmer had been an experience that each of us would cherish. Each day, each moment is unforgettable, the kind of passion, dedication that we have put in this film cannot be easily forgotten. We have shot a song called 'Dil Dance Maare' in Ladakh, we (Akshay, Saif&me) had to dance on a stony path. I was wearing heels which were about 4 inches and I had to dance wearing this really short dress. I think the way we shot that song was the most memorable experience for me because the song was great and we enjoyed doing it so much. It was tough but we laughed it off, we had a great time shooting the song.
Action, that is probably something new for you.
To be honest, I am not really the action sorts. I was really nervous because I don't enjoy action as much as I enjoy dance or an emotional performance. I think the action-director, Peter Hinnes is outstanding; he is the best action choreographer we have in India. He is truly unbeatable, we had really heavy action in the climax of our movie but the kind of precautions that he had taken, we were literally mollycoddled as actors which I really owe it to him. I have done a lot of action and the safety measures were great. I enjoyed doing a sequence with Anilji, it's like a hose pipe sequence where he is putting water on me. It was an enthralling experience, really energizing, took a lot out of us. We were really drained by the end of it but according to me, I enjoyed doing that and that's the best action sequence I feel.
You are doing a Yash Raj Film production after a while how different is it now.
I think it's like coming back home. My sister had done Dil Toh Pagal Hai with them, which is one of her greatest films, and I use to always be there on the sets, kind of watching and learning Yashji direct. We have always been like a family and since childhood I have been a filmy kid, so working with YRF was like being home. I think it's the richest experience to be working with Yash Raj Films and to be working with Adi .I think it's a heart warming experience because the kind of dedication they have and the entire production team has towards a film is heart warming. That's why they make the greatest films in India because the work that goes in drives you to give your best. I think it's my richest experience ever and I hope to do many more films with Yash Raj.