Set in Miami, Florida, Dostana is about two friends - Abhishek and John Abraham, who pretend to be gay to get an accommodation.
"I don't think there's anything objectionable on homosexuality in Dostana. We aren't trying to make fun of anybody. We aren't making a comment on any community.It's not about homosexuality. It's not a Brokeback Mountain," he said.
Would you do a Brokeback Mountain?
"Yes, why not? It'd depend entirely on the script."
Last week you gave everyone a scare by falling ill.
Unfortunately, falling ill is a part of life. I was shooting in the rain and I got a viral fever. Now I'm back on my feet working hard.
Now that your Dostana is being released, don't you feel left out of the excitement?
I wouldn't say left out. But, yes, I do feel a bit disconnected because I'm shooting for Mani Ratnam's film in the jungles of Kerala, two hours' drive from Kochi where there's no network. It's very tough to connect with the world.
Is that a blessing or a curse?
Both. A blessing because there're no distractions and one can get completely into the world of the film. Once we wrap up, all of us head for the gym and then sit on the scenes for the next day. On the deficit side, I don't get to connect with my loved ones. God forbid, if there's another medical emergency.
How do you feel about the very unusual space that you're occupying in Dostana?
Why do you call it unusual?
We've never had a comedy where the two heroes masquerade as gay characters, though we did have Rishi Kapoor and Paintal in drag throughout Raffoo Chakkar decades ago.
There you have it. Actors are required to do many things, not all close to their personality or orientation. I wouldn't call Dostana unusual. I'd call it unique. It's a very funny film. I haven't done a comedy in a long while. The last one was Jhoom Barabar Jhoom. But Dostana is a full-on comedy. So a first for me!
I've known Tarun Mansukhani for more than 15 years. In fact, he started his career in my mother's company for a TV series called Dekh Bhai Dekh. I heard the concept of "Dostana" even before I did Karan's Kabhie Alvida Naa Kehna (KANK). Tarun told me about Dostana during KANK and I was on board.
How do you think the gay community will react to Dostana?
I don't think there's anything objectionable about homosexuality in Dostana. The film is a love triangle. John and I tell Priyanka we're a couple in order to become tenants in her house. We aren't trying to make fun of anybody. We aren't making a comment on any community. I don't think anyone needs to be offended. It's not about homosexuality. It's not a Brokeback Mountain.
Would you do a Brokeback Mountain?
Yes, why not? It'd depend entirely on the script.
Are you as friendly with your Dostana co-stars John and Priyanka off screen as you're on screen?
More off than on screen. In the film, John and I are rivals. Off screen John has been a dear friend from the time we did Dhoom together. That was our first hit. So there was a bit of an emotional connect there. We've remained friends since then. We truly had a blast shooting Dostana.
You must have been extremely disturbed by your dad's illness?
Of course! I think any parent's illness is extremely disturbing to any child. I'm not an exception. We hope our parents will never fall ill. But they do. I love my father immensely. I dealt with his illness as best as I could. And I hope I'm half as good a son as he was to his parents.
That's a hard act to follow.
I know. But I don't compare myself as a son to my father. I just try to follow in his footsteps. Calling it a hard act is very cynical. I look at his track record as a son as very inspiring.