When Art Imitates Life  

As Bollywood actor Shahid Kapoor celebrates a good run of his latest release Jersey, he unabashedly wears the father card on his sleeves, something close to what he has done in the movie

Published: 01st May 2022 05:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th April 2022 04:57 PM   |  A+A-

Shahid Kapoor in a still from 'Jersey'

Shahid Kapoor in a still from 'Jersey'. (Photo| YouTube screengrab)

Express News Service

I bruised my lip during the shoot of Jersey, but the pain is not so much as the wait for it to release,” confesses Haider and Padmaavat star Shahid Kapoor, a few hours before his latest movie hit the theatres last Friday. He says he could relate to the film more now, because he is a father. “I am a family man, I could understand the character in depth,” he explains.

Kapoor’s new film Jersey is a remake of the Telugu film of the same name. The 2019 release directed by Gowtam Tinnanuri is about late bloomers in the field of sports who aspire to be great, but face several complications. “It’s a sports drama with the journey of these characters and triumph of the human spirit. It tells you to just chase your dream. I have chased my dreams sincerely, I never thought I would become an actor,” he shares. 

The original movie won two National Film Awards––Best Feature Film (Telugu), and Best Editing. It was also screened at the International Indian Toronto Film Festival in 2020. His favourite part is sharing screen space with his father Pankaj Kapur. Jersey that also stars actress Mrunal Thakur in a pivotal role, explores the relationship between Arjun, the protagonist, and his son. “I got to learn a lot from him (Kapur)now. There is that magical moment when the camera is on. Since it was lockdown time we got to spend time together. We would talk to each other and have coffee together. We had one-on-one father-son time. I loved that,” he recalls. Kapoor admits that he wasn’t too close to his dad, but their equation is much better now. “We both are different kinds of fathers. Now I understand what being a father is all about.” 

Does he miss the massive stardom he achieved with Kabir Singh three years ago? “So far, I’ve lived in a bubble, but the lockdown helped me overcome it. I enjoyed this phase for the last two-and-a-half years. I was not in Mumbai. We went to Punjab during the lockdown. I spent time with my kids and was far away from acting and the film world. I enjoyed the simple things about life after a long time. It changed me a lot personally and gave me a new perspective on the world. It’s necessary for your emotional growth and activity.”

Kapoor reveals that his wife Mira got emotional after watching Jersey. “Yes, but they were tears of joy. After I got married to Mira, three films of mine had flopped consecutively. She was newly married and must have thought that she was married to a star and here she saw my movies flop one after the other. She has seen my struggles. She has seen my journey through failures as well as successes. There’s a scene in the film where I tie my son’s shoelaces in the film. She could relate that to my relationship with our children Zain and Misha,” Kapoor says. He adds that it is not as easy to come out of intense roles as it is to get into them. But he is learning to cope with it thanks to his children as they are his stressbusters.

As the movie garnered positive reviews, how does he celebrate the success? “I take the day off and relax at home and eat whatever I feel like. I sit around idly, which is a celebration for me.” The 41-year-old actor admits that his major takeaway from Jersey was learning to deal with circumstances. “Circumstances will always push you down. If you think negatively you won’t be able to deal with it. If you are a positive person you will come out of it. Change is the only constant. There will be a day when things will start working in your favour but for that you have to be a fighter.”The Jab We Met actor is excited about his upcoming projects which include his OTT debut––a quirky crime drama ––with director duo Raj and DK of Family Man fame, and an action film with Ali Abbas Zafar, the director of the 2016 Salman Khan-starrer Sultan. 


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