Streets of Mumbai have people asking - Jaane Kahan Se Aaya Hai. This is your solo film after a long long time
I don't think any solo film can be a re-invention by an actor. Yes, it is the truth that after a long time I'm doing a solo film. It just happened that everything fell in place. JKSAH was a solo film I always wanted to be a part of, not that I wasn't offered earlier. I didn't feel that some of the films I got offered were the right kind of solo projects. You need the right kind of an idea first. Milap had that intact.
What's so challenging in doing a comic role again and again, and how can you be so different?
The most challenging comic performances come from how that performance is written in the screenplay. When you see a different performance, you will always see a different writing there. Milap Zaveri is a good writer and keeps on challenging himself first which in turn becomes challenging for us actors too.
How different or same is Milap the writer and Milap the director?
Milap Zaveri is a very good writer and a good director too. It's the craft of that man that is bigger than everything. There is no comparison between Milap the writer and Milap the director. They both are the same person and so you cannot compare them two.
And what about the girl from Venus, Jacqueline Fernandez?
(Laughs) Well, if she is from Venus and is so beautiful, than we definitely want more gorgeous faces from Venus to come down to Earth and enter Bollywood.
We also hear that she is the next Katrina Kaif of Bollywood
It's not about whether she is the next Katrina. Whether it is Katrina or Jacqueline, both are hard working actresses and have proved themselves. Eventually, everyone who makes a place for themselves in Bollywood is hardworking and audiences have accepted them here. Once the audiences give the green light to them, I don't think that anybody has the right to comment on whether they are here to stay for good or not.
You are improving as a dancer too.
(Laughs) I won't say much on this question but the fact remains that it's only my choreographers who think that I am a good dancer (laughs).
And how does Boman Irani fit into the film?
It is spooky but the fact that this is the first time we have used an actor as a part of the promotions than in the film. Boman is not a part of the film. We wanted to design a promo with Boman. Even the promo idea was given to us by Ram Gopal Varma. But why not? I requested Boman to be a part of the promo and he agreed.
That's good marketing Riteish.
No, I think it's not only about marketing, is it? It's a fresh idea put in to promote your film. Either it could've been someone else. When you have a Boman Irani doing a small part in the promo, it's very easy to relate with for the audience. It was a promo only to convey what the film is all about. Boman is a fantastic actor and there was no one who could've pulled it off like him. You get tricked that he is a part of the film.
Many from the film fraternity think that you always play a safe game. When you do a Rann, that's when you take risks...
Riteish Deshmukh is just an actor. He is not a safe player nor is he a risk taker. My job is to act. As an actor, I agree, that I want to do everything. But the real risk takers are the producers and the directors and the writers. And when they think of casting me, that's another risk too (laughs). For Rann, it was RGV's conviction and belief that I could pull that role off. Yes, Rann was a risk but it paid off well.
And Aladdin too
Correct. It was. You're right. I am glad that I did Aladdin. It didn't work is something different but I enjoyed being a part of Aladdin. Sujoy Ghosh took his biggest risk by making the film. But it paid off when it came to the treatment and acting. It was a role that Mr. Bachchan and I will never ever get to perform in our acting career now.
Do you think that the films are failing at the box office because of its writing or its direction?
I think we need to have good writers and the same people should be given a chance to write different stories. I don't think that it is the writing that is failing us at the box office. It can be a bad direction, bad acting, bad editing, etc. It's a mix of all. There are so many instances in Bollywood when a good writing is screwed up by a very bad acting.
...is a love story out of this world.
There are love stories and then there are love stories. So what's so different about Jaane Kahan Se Aayi Hai? Well, it's the baby born out of Ram Gopal Varma's head of thoughts. A one line idea then executed by writer director Milap Zaveri. Don't get scared. It's not a scary love story. A girl from Venus comes in search for a guy from the Earth. That's a one liner. Got it? So how can there be diversity in a film like JKSAH? The answer is - Riteish Deshmukh. It's not about his comic timings and intelligence as an actor. It's about him doing hundred comic roles and yet be different and loved by all in his hundred and first film. That's Deshmukh. He is a darling. He can make you smile and laugh at the same time. This correspondent gets into a quickie with Riteish to know more about the film, Milap, and Jacqueline of course.