Comfortable can be boring, says Anil Kapoor

Anil Kapoor speaks to Deepali Singh about stepping into Salman Khan’s shoes to host 'Bigg Boss OTT 3', comparisons with the 'Ek Tha Tiger' actor, and his perennially positive mindset
Poster of 'Big Boss OTT 3'
Poster of 'Big Boss OTT 3'

You have done shows like 24 and The Night Manager. Recently, you were also part of the documentary mini-series, Rennervations with Jeremy Renner. Did that help prepare you for Bigg Boss OTT 3?

Rennervations is kind of a reality-cum-fiction production. It was completely unscripted. That experience has helped me understand the format of Bigg Boss, where one needs to react to the situations impromptu, and make it interesting for viewers.

Your recent projects in the fiction space—films or OTT have received a lot of appreciation. Why opt for a reality show at this time?

Every show and movie was a different experience for me. They kept me excited and I learned a lot. They also helped me meet new and young talent. Otherwise, you can get inside a cocoon, become comfortable doing what you’re doing, and life becomes too boring. You have to find excitement in doing things you have never done. After spending so many years in this business, I would like to explore things that are out of my comfort zone. For instance, Rennervations let me work with some of the best talent in the world.

I learned a lot from it and I applied that learning in The Night Manager.

When you do something, which is scripted, then it has to be on a certain scale—films such as Animal and Fighter had that scale. On OTT platforms, however, the non-scripted shows work better.

Before coming on board, were you worried about comparisons with Salman Khan, who is synonymous with the show?

If we start thinking of comparisons, we will not be able to do anything. The greatest basketball players, football players, cricketers or actors or businessmen might have also been told that there were people before them and that they cannot match up to them.

If they had lived with that fear, they would have had to let go of the opportunities that came their way. You have to be ready to fail too, and then move ahead and do the next thing. I move forward with a positive headspace for all endeavours, whether it is 24, Slumdog Millionaire, Mashaal or Woh Saat Din. With Mashaal, I had wondered how I am going to work with Dilip Kumar or with Naseer in Woh Saat Din. I have questioned how I could do a Telugu or Kannada film, when I did not know the languages. But, I did them because I was convinced and simply took these opportunities as jobs.

Did Salman Khan give you any advice or suggestions on hosting the show?

He just said that if someone misbehaves, we will take care of it together (laughs). On a serious note, we’re like brothers. We love each other.

I feel he’s always happy whenever I do something exciting. I know that he’s excited that I’m doing this.

Lately, the audience has been seeing a diverse range of roles from you, whether it is Jugjugg Jeeyo, The Night Manager, Animal or Fighter. How much of this choosing process did you plan ahead?

Everything has been organic. If you plan too much, it doesn’t work. I tell youngsters too, to not be scared of taking risks. What difference does it make if something doesn’t work? One just has to be on the battlefield, meet people and keep working hard. Work is worship. When you’re unwell, work; when you’re unfit, work; when you’re depressed, work. And, everything will be fine. That’s what I believe in.

You have started prep for Suresh Triveni’s action film Subedaar. There’s also a sci-fi comedy adapted from Malayalam film Android Kunjappam version 5.25. What can you tell us about them?

It is correct that I am doing these two films. Rest, I can only share once I have more information.

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The New Indian Express