Enthusiastic as ever, fifty-something Anil Kapoor talks about his new film and what keeps him and his marriage ticking.
Tell us about your new salt and pepper look in Dil Dhadakne Do … it’s a first for you!
I love experimenting, reinventing from the beginning of my career. I have taken too many risks…dangerous risks. People expect me to do tapori roles and I go and do Eeshwar, Lamhe, Biwi No 1, Taal, Welcome or a small cameo. I have kept doing out of the box things. For Dil Dhadakne Do, when Zoya (Akhtar, the director) and I met, we had thought up some references about the character … and it was almost the same! It was a great creative collaboration.
How was the experience of working with a young woman director like Zoya Akhtar in Dil Dhadakne Do?
It is not about how young you are. It is about who stimulates you to do better work. Zoya is an extremely talented, world-class director. She persuaded me for a year and half for this film.
In real life, are you dominating towards your children?
No, they dominate me!
But does the father figure within you overpower you sometimes?
When my children are taking advantage of me being friendly, Sunita is there to remind me. I feel we must let our children be the way they are, let them learn from their mistakes but stop them from doing glaring mistakes.
What is the secret of your 30-year-long married life?
The secret is being positive and having fun, you have to have a sense of humor. I am happy with my marriage. We all have plus and minus points, we need to adjust and overlook certain points. Marriage is about compromise.
I am quite blessed to have Sunita in my life. According to my friends I am what I am today because of her. But there has been some contribution from my end too (laughs).
You have been in the industry for three decades. Which were your best phases?
I can’t remember any best or worst. I have been consistent, steady. For me, it is about reinvention, experimenting. I feel I am fortunate to be part of good films. When we were shooting for Armaan (2002) I wanted to take a sabbatical and I spoke to Amitabhji (Bachchan) about it.
He said he had made the mistake of not working for three-four years and told me not to take a break. I respect him, I look up to him; and I have never taken a break.