Three weeks after the release of Luck By Chance, Rishi Kapoor is now getting ready to be seen on the big screen yet again in Delhi 6 where he plays a Chandni Chowk 'nawab' in the current times. However, this is not all that he is doing this year as in months to come, he would be seen in multiple projects like Kal Kissne Dekha, Love Aaj Kal, Chintu Ji, Sadiyaan and Do Dooni Chaar (which incidentally also marks the big screen comeback of his wife Neetu Kapoor after close to three decades)
Joginder Tuteja catches up with the veteran actor who continues to be ever-so-energetic about his work during the shoot of Do Dooni Chaar. While the talk is mostly centered around Delhi-6, one can't help but smile on various anecdotes and wisecracks that he shares, which unfortunately are relegated to our laptop as 'off the record' conversations. Well, may be some other day, some other time. Till then, let's hear on to what Rishiji has to talk about Delhi 6; of course in his own witty manner!
So how do you go about picking up a role today? I am sure there would be quite a few offers a day.
Let me not sound immodest when I say that even today, I am given offers by dozens. However, I don't intend to do senior citizen characters that are cliched and formulaic. Sorry, no 'Khabardaar Jo Tumne....' kind of roles for me. I want to pick characters that mean something for a film. I guess I am a reasonably good actor and there is no dearth of filmmakers out there who can have something interesting to offer me.
Which means even cameos are out...?
Certainly! It cannot be just a cameo which would enhance the star value of a project. I have done something like that in the past but I won't do that again. My role has to be pivotal to the plot. It may be small but it has to be meaningful.
Something that we can expect from Delhi-6?
Absolutely... Delhi-6 is what I would call a true ensemble piece cinema. For Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, the director, the film is not just about a hero and heroine. It is about so many other characters that come together in the film. There are people like Om Puri, Waheeda Rehman, Tanvi Azmi, Vijay Raaz, Atul Kulkarni, Divya Dutta, Pawan Malhotra - so many of them. And in the middle of it all there is a love story of Abhishek (Bachchan) and Sonam (Kapoor). See, if you have a title like Delhi-6 which is the pin code for Chandni Chowk, you can't just have a story about two people. There are a whole lot of people in a locality and this is what's shown in the film.
How about the entire Hindu-Muslim angle?
It isn't the 'in your face' kind; it is something which is obvious. Chandni Chowk is a place jahan aapko sab tabke ke log milte hain, chahe woh Hindu ho ya Musalman. What has been shown is that when people of all communities can live in harmony in this particular area, why can't it be the same across the country. In a way, Delhi-6 is being used as a metaphor for the entire country.
One hears that communal violence too plays a role in Delhi-6?
That's right. There are riots and innocent people die; they are victimized. Abhishek too gets trapped.
So how does your character come into picture?
He is someone who is very protective of Abhishek. It's a strange relationship that he shares with him. I play the role of a wealthy 'nawab' who was once in love with Abhishek's mother who got married to another man, who incidentally was his best friend. Though he remains as a bachelor throughout his life, he maintains a soft corner for the woman's family, hence treating Abhishek as his own son.
And then there is Waheedaji in the film as well, with whom you return 20 years after Chandni.....
Yes, it was nostalgic. I have done Kabhi Kabhie, Coolie and Chandni - all superb films, successful films. I hope we make it four-in-a-row with Delhi-6!