Whoever said that models cannot act, must be eating his own words. Because John Abraham is proof of the fact that, they can. And how! There is certainly more to him than his good looks. He will soon be seen in Milan Luthria's Taxi No.9211 along with Nana Patekar and Sameera Reddy. Without further ado, we present John Abraham.
You recently spent Valentine's day away from Bipasha. Instead you spent it with hordes of screaming female fans in London. Good or bad?
Well I think it's good and bad! It was good because I met a lot of people in London. And of course it was bad because Bipasha was in Bombay and I was in London. So this was a Valentine's Day I'm spent alone in the city of London.
Did you enjoy London?
Yes very much. I went to Bradford, Birmingham and Southhall. The response has been very positive and encouraging for someone like me.
Taxi 9211... Tell us about the movie and the character that you play.
It is a new age humorous film. It is the story of two people. One is Jai Mittal, played by me and the other is Raghav Shastri played by Nana Patekar. My character is a rich millionaire's son who is very spoilt and brattish. He loves wine, women and partying all night. But he's not a bad guy in his heart. Nana plays a taxi driver. The story begins at mid night. It is a 24-hour story. Jai meets Raghav by accident and their lives start changing.
This film was shot in one schedule in 45 days. Is that right?
It was super! It was great fun. We don't intend to be funny in the movie. But when you watch it, you'll laugh. It's funny and emotional at the same time.
Your co-star in the film Nana Patekar was brilliant in Bluffmaster. What's he like in Taxi 9211?
He is outstanding. He, himself told me that he hasn't seen his movies Bluffmaster and Apaharan but Taxi 9211 is a film he really wants to see. He generally shoots his films and moves on. But he is really curious to see how this film has turned out. When he sees both of us in the poster, even he wonders what two diverse characters are doing in this movie!
In this film you have a line "Mujhe tees minute ki journey teen minute main karni hai." It's a guy who is always in a hurry. Is there a Jai in John?
That's what Milan Luthria did. He took a lot of me in this character. He believed that if the casting is right, he would not have too much work in terms of the performances of the actors. He was very smart to choose me as Jai, who is very restless by nature. He is probably very generous and light hearted at the same time. Raghav Shastri on the other hand is a man who is always frustrated. The casting in this film was very important.
The music of the film is doing quite well. Which is your favorite song?
My favorite is Ek Nazar. It is my introduction song in the movie. I found it very melodious. I also liked Boombai Nagariya.
In recent times, you have a host of movies to your credit like Viruddh, Garam Masala, Zinda and Taxi 9211. Is it a deliberate move?
It's just a gut feeling. I just take up what my heart tells me to. I put myself in the place of the audience and wonder how they would appreciate a certain movie. There are times when my gut feeling is wrong. But I try not to fail the audience too often.
You come across as a very laid back kind of guy. But after Water, Deepa Mehta has been raving about you. Is it something you have been working on?
I had to take Water very seriously because of the kind of clothes and walk I had in the film. I play a Gandhian in the film and so I wear a dhoti throughout. I had to learn Sanskrit and also how to play the flute. I actually had to change my walk in the movie because I play a Gandhian. I could not walk like a hero. At the end of the day, I believe that the hero of the film is the director.
She has signed you for her next film Komagata Maru. Apparently, she has approached Amitabh Bachchan for a role in the film. Is he on board yet?
He is interested in doing it. But unfortunately because of his illness, I don't think the movie will start before late this year or early next year.
What is the one great thing about Taxi 9211?
It's a great story with a great screenplay. It's a screenplay like you've only seen in Rang De Basanti probably. The USP of the film is its director Milan Luthria. People will be pleasantly surprised by this genre. I saw this movie on the rough cut without any background music or dubbed songs. And I cracked up! It worked for me. I was crying in the end. If it worked for me, with being in the movie, I'm sure it will work for others around.
People always associate you with motor bikes. When did this fascination start?
I have loved bikes since I was in the 6th standard. My cousin had a 750 cc bike. When you are really young, it looks huge! So I decided to buy a bike one day. The passion has always been there. Then Dhoom happened and it only helped my cause!
Lastly, we have to ask you this question for the sake of your female fans and also all the aunties! When are you getting married?
Well, Bipasha and I have decided that we will speak about marriage when we are ready for it! At this point, we haven't spoken about it since we're not ready for it. We're waiting for the right time. It could be four, five or even seven years!