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At a time when the N-word makes it presence felt everywhere, you would believe that he's born with a silver spoon. But, Varun Dhawan admits he wants to be more than just a star kid.
Ever since he stepped into the industry, the young lad have had to face constant comparisons with Salman Khan and Govinda who too like him, are a darling with the masses.
Ahead of the release of his upcoming film Judwaa 2, we caught up with Varun Dhawan who was at his candid best and of course, bundled with lot of live wire voltage...
'I Knew Comparisons With Judwaa Would Create An Incredible Amount Of Buzz'
Q. Since Judwaa 2 is a reboot of Judwaa, obviously comparisons would be made with the first film. How do you take that?
A. Honestly, I had to think about these things when I signed the film. It is obvious that these things would happen and I knew that such things would come, especially on the social media. As an actor, I knew that all this would result in some incredible amount of buzz. It's going to be organic that there would be chatter.
People would say 'accha kiya', 'kharab kiya hai', and 'bahut accha kiya hai'...I am very aware about these facts. But to find out whether it's good or bad, people would at least go to the theatres on September 29.
'You Cannot Let Twitter Decide The Films You Make'
Q. But how easy or difficult was it to slip into your roles?
A. Mine (Judwaa 2) has a fresh approach towards both the characters and I have played them in my own way. Story, screenplay, dialogues, circumstances - everything has changed in this reboot. Five to six iconic scenes have been retained and if you are a fan of the original Judwaa then you will catch those scenes very well.
Q. What made you reboot a film that released about 20 years back?
A. It has been 20 years since the release of Judwaa. You have to realize that there are children who are 14,15 or 16, who have not seen the original film and they are the new cinema goers. My dad made this film because the genre is not being made that much anymore. This is a conventional Hindi film genre, which isn't made internationally. Manmohan Desai has given birth to this genre and my father is a big fan of him.
There are many successful films made in this genre, but since a few films didn't do well, we come to a conclusion that the genre is finished. But we need to evolve with time within a given genre as well. You cannot let Twitter decide the films you make. But yes, definitely there is a need for new ideas and treatment.
'I Would Like To Be Just Varun Dhawan'
Q. What's your take on comedies and commercial films being ridiculed most of the times as compared to other genres?
A. This has been happening for years. Luckily when I started with Student Of The Year, I was prepared for this. As an actor, I have dabbled in both the genres and luckily I have been appreciated in both. I would just like to be myself.
I want to do diverse type of roles in different genres. You can be typecast when you have done some big body of work which is like a decade at least. Today, thank god for that, I am in a place where I can create an opportunity for myself to do the films because people have their faith in me now.
'My Father Wouldn't Have Made Judwaa 2 As My First Film'
Q. Do you think your father David Dhawan would have made Judwaa 2 without you?
A. It was always Sajid Nadiadwala's idea to make Judwaa 2. He was wanting to make the film before and it never got made then. My dad had a conversation with him, and I wasn't a part of it back then. But I don't think he would have made Judwaa 2 with any other actor. I also feel that he wouldn't have made Judwaa 2 with me as my first film because he likes to work with big stars. When he decided to work with me, he said, now you are a star, so we can work.(laughs)
'Social Media Popularity Doesn't Translate Into A Film's Opening'
Q. Do you feel that these days, Bollywood is being influenced by social media too much and there is a fear of backlash?
A. Unfortunately I feel yes, that is happening. But at the same time I don't think most of the big, successful actors get influenced by it. Social media is something that will make you think.
I would actually reverse this question, when you write something on social media, even you would think twice fearing the backlash. I am sure, even you get influenced by social media. Having said that, we cannot be so relied on social media for the opening as that does not translate. Social media popularity will not translate in your film's opening.
'Comparison With Salman Khan Has Been Happening Since First Day Of My Career'
Q. What about your constant comparison with Salman Khan? Does that add pressure on you?
A. No, not really. Comparison with Salman Khan have been happening since first day of my career. It's just something which is there and happens with a lot of actors. But eventually what matters the most is people buying tickets and coming to watch my film.
'We Can Feel As Powerful As We Want As Actors, But The Real Power Is In The Public's Hand'
Q. Is there an overemphasis on film promotions in our industry because down south, we see films being promoted for not more than 2 weeks?
A. It is incredible how they work. They have a great strategy close to film's release. You learn. When I came 5 years back, promotions was the new cool. I have promoted my films like a mad guy for 5 years. I used to enjoy a lot. I would still do it if I am told to do.
But for Badrinath Ki Dulhania, we did a 5 week campaign. By the time we came to Judwaa, I had realized that there is a fatigue. The translation of people standing for you in crowd may not always result into them coming to the theatres. It is same as the social media hype.
People on social media would bash a film left right and center, but that very same film would be going housefull in theatres. The basic funda what I believe in is, the audience would go to the theatre, watch a film, recommend the film to their close friends and relative.
That's how the word of mouth spreads. Right now, content is the star and content is the marketing. We can feel as powerful as we want as actors. But the real power is in the public's hand.
'I See A Lot Of Actor- Bashing Happening'
Q. Is it right to blame only the director for failure of a film?
A. I am a director's son. If a director's vision is not interfered with and if he gets to make a film the way he wants to, then it is only his film. So you should blame the director. Actually, it is unfair to blame the actor because he is not writing the film, he is just following the vision of the director. I see a lot of 'actor bashing' happening because they are face of the film, but eventually they are just following someone else's command.
Q. Lastly, when do you start shooting for October, Sui Dhaga and ABCD 3?
A. October will go on floors in October and that's a conscious decision. After October, I will start shooting for Sui Dhaga and after that there is something else. ABCD 3 is something that has been in work since a long time and I would definitely like to do that film as well.
Excerpts from the interview-