He might be a famous film-maker today, but it’s no secret that Karan Johar started his film career with Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (1995; he did a cameo in the film as one of Shah Rukh Khan’s friends). And with Aditya Chopra’s (director) cult film crossing the 1,000- week mark last month, Karan insists that Aditya and Shah Rukh should be credited for kick-starting his cinematic journey.
“It was an amazing and an emotional moment for me [when the film completed 1,000 weeks on December 12, 2014]. I read the book [written by Aditya about the making of the film] just a few days ago, and it brought back a flood of memories. DDLJ will always be my biggest training ground. It taught me everything about films. I’m in movies because of Adi (Aditya Chopra) and Shah Rukh,” says Karan.
Now, the film-maker has reached a position of importance in the industry, and continues to give a platform to newcomers. In 2012, he launched Varun Dhawan, Alia Bhatt and Sidharth Malhotra in Student Of The Year. In fact, Alia went on record to state that she prefers “calling Karan (Johar) over my father for advice on my films”.
“I am deeply moved with what she has said, but that’s the truth. My equation with Alia, Varun and Sid is not of a director or mentor, but of a parent, who is also parenting their careers. I want to ensure that all three have different graphs and journeys. But I never impose my opinion on them; I give suggestions and leave it to them,” he says.
And how does it feel to return to acting (with Anurag Kashyap’s next), especially when Anurag says that KJo is going to “surprise people” in the film? “I don’t know; I think he (Anurag) is being kind. I have no idea since I haven’t seen the film in a complete sequence,” adds Karan.