Growing up in a family that’s part of the film industry has many advantages, and Arjun Kapoor is well aware of them. With father Boney Kapoor producing films and uncle Anil Kapoor acting in them, the young actor admits he has learnt a lot from the two over the years. In an interview with HT Café, Arjun says he admires his uncle’s professionalism and dedication.
You’ve done seven films in four years of being in the industry. Is that too much or too little?
I started off by working in many films, but I’ve slowed down a bit of late. I will do more films when I feel excited about the material. As long as there is a gap between films, it is not too much.
You’ve never worked with the same co-star in any of your films. What do you make of that?
It just happened that I worked with new actresses in every film. I am lucky and fortunate to be able to learn and grow with new directors and actors in each film. I have also had the pleasure of working with talented actors like Rishi Kapoor, Irrfan Khan, Manoj Bajpayee, Ronit Roy, Naseeruddin Shah, Amitji (Amitabh Bachchan), and other actors, technicians and directors. It’s exciting to discover new people and their energies. I feel blessed, as working with these people has allowed me to grow and learn. You also form equations with people. And the film industry is so small that the more you interact, the more you grow.
You will be working with Anil Kapoor in your next film. How has he influenced you in your personal and professional life?
That is difficult to quantify when you have someone who inspires and motivates you beyond the profession by the way he conducts himself. I have been watching Anil chachu (uncle) over the years off and on camera. His influence has been tremendous. I didn’t have to wait till I entered the industry to learn from him. The way I conduct myself has a lot to do with what I have observed him doing as an actor in terms of professionalism and dedication. I take a lot of pride in being a producer-friendly actor. It stems from watching my father and Anil chachu making films. I value the process of film-making as much as the fame and adulation that comes with it. As for working with him (Anil Kapoor), I’m feeling nervous, which is good. I’m certain it will be great fun.
You played a double role in Aurangazeb (2013). What prompted you to take up Mubarakan, which also has you in a double role?
I didn’t choose the film only for the double role. The director, Anees Bazmee, and Anil chachu (Kapoor) were my other reasons to take on this film. Both the characters that I play are poles apart. That was a challenge. Moreover, it is a family-friendly film. I think the younger generation hasn’t done enough of such family-oriented films. Comedy, as a genre, fascinated me as a kid. I remember watching many films starring Govinda while growing up.
Was it easier to play a double role after Aurangazeb?
When I signed Mubarakan, I didn’t think it would matter that I had done Aurangazeb. But now, after the first schedule, I am glad. The temperament that you need while playing a double role is different because you are sharing screen space with yourself. The more experience you have, the better. In this film, not just are the characters different but their looks [are different] as well. Aurangazeb prepared me for this double role.