Hrithik Roshan kisses trouble, every time he embarks on a journey filled with unpredictable results. But then the results are obvious - it's a success. It means that he kisses trouble goodbye. On the one hand, Duggu (Hrithik's nick name) exudes confidence, humour and, like a lot of ex-child stars, sometimes seems eerily mature and worldly. Yet off screen he cuts a surprisingly small, compact figure, still quite boyish despite the well-cut jacket, ill-cut beard and resonant voice with its Rat Pack locutions and finger-popping rhythms. As he discusses this summer's most awaited film Kites with this correspondent, occasionally you feel him pulling against the wind, then with the wind, and surprisingly, sometimes, unmoved. Here's the unchained Hrithik Roshan. Fly along with him and explore the journey because you never know, you may kiss trouble goodbye too.
They say love has no language. So how proficient a Mexican are you after meeting a belleza (beauty) like Barbara? Also, the film has you speaking in English and Hindi and Barbara in Spanish.
(laughs) You've learnt a bit of the language too. Interacting with Barbara and her family, I have picked up a lot of Spanish. I'm so busy filming for Guzaarish that most of the words are out of my vocabulary. I plan to revisit my books and I am going to brush up on my Spanish.
Why can't Indian films show sexuality successfully?
That's because we are not fully comfortable with ourselves. It's kind of a hypocritical perception that our society has and is been made to follow. I completely disagree with it. If I keep on talking about the censors and our society, it's never going to end. If a love story needs to portray a certain scene depicting sensuality and sexuality, it shouldn't be looked down upon as dirty or vulgar. You should not protect yourself, you should just let go. The scene has to be pure.
And talk about a pure talent like Kangana Ranaut who plays a special appearance in Kites.
Absolutely. She is an incredible actor. Her spirit and enthusiasm is infectious. She is a person who has been gifted by this incredible beauty. Kangana has no ego and no inhibition in portraying any emotion which is something very rare in our industry. I had a great time working with her and partying with Kangana. Those were the times I will cherish forever.
All lovers have to face the music before they get married. Did you go through some tough days before you got married to your wife in real life, Sussanne Roshan?
Well, there was one aspect that had to be accomplished before I got married to Sussanne. When I was dating her, I always told her that I wanted to be an actor and I don't know if I can be successful. I told her that I might not be able to give her that life that we enjoy because of our parents. It will be a different story once we get married. Even a vacation in India might be an expensive gamble. You never know what happens with the life of an actor. I knew I would probably not be in a mindset to celebrate a marriage if I was not successful. But there was never a worry for me because I was completely in love with Sussanne. She has complete faith in me. I often say this and I mean it - I would not have become an actor if it was not for Sussanne. If she had not blindfolded me and pushed me in front of the camera.
Anurag Basu is the first director to direct a film with you under your father's production house, Film Kraft. How different was it not to see your father behind the directors chair?
There was never a moment where I thought of it being something that was out of the ordinary. Everything happened at such an organic pace. I have to applaud my father's efforts in striving to keep growing as a creative man. Kites was his subject and he wanted to hand it over to a young mind like Anurag Basu to see how he could've directed it, and therefore have that as an access point to grow as a creative man himself.
Is there a director hidden somewhere inside Hrithik Roshan, the actor?
(laughs) People keep saying that to me. A director is not only about having talent and knowing what is wrong and what is right. I do have that faculty in my brain where I can visualise and help in creating suitable moments or to give the right kind of suggestions. But all that comes from me as an actor. To direct, you have to be able to conceive, you have to be able to write, you have to lead and motivate hundreds of people.
The last time we saw you in an ensemble film was in 2001, Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham. When do we see you repeat the magic?
Pretty soon. I won't name the film or the star cast but it's going to be an insane ensemble film.
Are you having a separation anxiety on Kites as we finish off this interview?
Not an anxiety. But any film that I've been so honest and close with, I miss it when it gets over. It happened when I did Koi Mil Gaya and it will happen when I complete my next film Guzaarish. There are certain roles that your heart goes out into. Kites is an evolution when it comes to me as an actor. Kites is a landmark film. I will never be the same actor again in my life.