Actors Alia Bhatt and filmmaker Imtiaz Ali were at their candid best when they visited the HT House on Tuesday to interact with the winners of the Stars in the City contest and to promote their upcoming film, Highway.
In the session moderated by HT City ­editor Sonal Kalra, the duo gave insightful and witty replies to the ­questions put forward by the winners.
Q. Why is Randeep Hooda (the lead actor of the film) missing from the promotions?
Imtiaz: It’s a well thought out strategy. He will be part of the ­promotions post January 26. We are kidding ourselves to think we are ­marketing geniuses.
Q. What was your reaction when you were offered the film?
Alia: People expect me to have had a ‘Oh my God’ moment when I was offered the film, but it was nothing that ­dramatic. It was quite casual and smooth. One casual evening he (Imtiaz) was at home chatting with my father, when he handed me this script to read. I wanted to read it immediately, but I had to sit and make ­conversation. He could sense my impatience, but he understood me. I read the script, really liked it, and the next day, I told him that I would love to be a part of the film.
Q. How did you get AR Rahman to sing the Punjabi number, Maahi Ve, for the film?
Imtiaz: It was his own idea. Everything that he sung for Rockstar, I ­actually had to convince him and cajole him a lot. But when we were discussing the music for this film, it was his own idea to sing the Punjabi number himself. He said that he would love to sing in Punjabi and work very hard on his ­diction.
Q. What do you like about Delhi?
Alia: I love the food and the weather of this city. Luckily, this time I am here in winters and can ­experience the chill. I have also heard a lot about the food here.