She’s the most wanted brand ambassador around. She’s the No 1 actress on a recent power list. She’s a style diva who’s made an impression on even meaningful filmmakers.
Enough reasons to corner her in her beau’s cosy den. Here’s Kareena Kapoor up close and personal with Roshmila Bhattacharya..
So how was your best friend’s wedding?
(Smiles) Really emotional since Amu (Amrita Arora) is my first best friend to get married. I had tears in my eyes when I saw her as a bride.. and when she spoke about her husband, Shakeel (Ladak), straight from the heart.
Do we hear the bells ringing for Saif Ali Khan and you now?
I definitely want to get married but it’s not going to happen for another two years. Neither of us have dates to spare, and I mean that literally.
Saif is busy with his first home production, Love Aaj Kal, that will be followed by Agent Vinod, Rensil D’ Silva’s film for Karan Johar and the Race sequel.
I’m in these films as well and also committed to Raju Hirani’s 3 Idiots, Sajid Nadiadwala’s Kambakt Ishq and Main Aur Mrs Khanna with Salman (Khan). There’s a Sudhir Mishra film too with Farhan (Akhtar). My diary is full, I’m getting roles to die for, I spend all my free time here with Saif or he’s at my place with me.
Only a paper is left to make the relationship official. And that will happen too, in time, because I know now that he truly is the special one. (Smiles) Everyone says I’m glowing, that I’ve never looked better. He brings out the best in me.
You’re definitely glowing.. you are also looking a little more than size zero?
(Smiles) Yeah, I’ve put on a little weight because for both Karan’s film and 3 Idiots the look has to be soft and vulnerable. And my directors’ wish is my command. For Agent Vinod I’m getting a more toned body, I’ll be weight training for the first time.
An international fashion magazine that launched in India recently had a survey for the most glamorous women and I topped the list and made it to the cover. It’s a compliment but I don’t want to get stuck as a style diva. I’m always open to change.
What did Saif get you on Valentine’s Day?
(Pouting prettily) Nothing, he doesn’t believe in the obvious. In fact, he hasn’t given me a gift in a while.
Did he write..
He has written lots of letters, he writes very well.
I meant a song dedicated to you?
Nooo. (Pointing to the half-a-dozen guitars lined up alongside) In fact, he hasn’t played much lately.
Still, my Saifu is the ultimate rock star! Give him a guitar, put him on the stage and he rocks!
Have you seen Rock On!!?
No, but we listen to the songs. There’s really been no time. I haven’t even seen Ghajini even though I’m a huge Aamir Khan fan.
Aamir has promised to arrange a special screening for us now. Also, I have yet to catch Slumdog Millionaire that has opened so many doors for our cinema.. our actors.
What happened jab Sylvester Stallone met Kareena Kapoor?
Would you believe it, the first day of the shoot Stallone drove himself to the sets? He came without security, a valet, without even a make-up man.
He said he had heard so much about the Bollywood film industry that he was ready to put himself in our hands, literally.
He’s one of the most chilled out guys I’ve met. On the last day of the Kambakt Ishq shoot I gave him a DVD of Jab We Met. The next time we meet, I’ll ask him if he has seen it.
With Akshay Kumar in the lead and Stallone in a cameo, won’t you end up as just a glamorous prop in the movie?
I’m very glam for sure after a long time. Akki Nerula has given me an international look. But as the title conveys, it’s a love story and Akshay and me together make up Kambkht Ishq. You will see a very different Geet but you won’t feel let down.
Isn’t there a teeny weeny feeling of regret that you are not in Imtiaz Ali’s next, Love Aaj Kal, more so since it is Saif first home production?
You may love spaghetti but you don’t eat it everyday, do you? Sometimes you try Chinese.. sometimes Indian, ditto for directors and actresses. I know Imtiaz and I will definitely work together again. Meanwhile, he’s in and out of the house everyday. And there is a part of me in Love Aaj Kal. (Smiles) So no one’s going to miss me because they will see me in Saif.
Besides, I’m in Saif’s next production, Agent Vinod. I loved Sreeram’s (Raghavan) Ek Haseena Thi and Johnny Gadar. This one is a very Saif Ali Khan kind of a film and I’m looking forward to it.
You’d once expressed a desire to do a modern-day Prem Rog. Will Saif produce it for you?
The trend of remakes seems to have faded away. Right now, I’d love to do a desi version of Mamma Mia! Meryl Streep is someone I’d like to mould my career on.
You are the No.1 actress in a recently released power list. Doesn’t that make you feel shaktimaan?
There are so many lists. You’re No. 1, someone else tops another. Today, numbers no longer matter. Sean Penn may have won the Oscar this year but that doesn’t make Brad Pitt, Mickey Rourke, Frank Langella or Richard Jenkins lesser actors. For me power is commanding respect through a performance.
Saif has taught me to view the larger picture.. to look at life 20 years from now when you will be ranked only on the basis of your performances.
I’ve realised the importance of picking roles and focussing on my work without a thought for the rat race. Today, when I’m not shooting, I’m reading, listening to music, may be even learning a new language. That helps me refuel on energy so I can move to the next act.
Saif seems to have had quite an influence on you?
(Smiles) He’s the most honest person I know.. he’s all heart. He’s like a Hollywood actor. He’s hates it because now that he’s with me, he’s constantly getting photographed. He doesn’t understand the need for publicity. For him cinema is all about passion and performance.
You mentioned that you’ve been doing a lot of reading. Have you read Chetan Bhagat’s Five Point Someone that has inspired 3 Idiots?
Raju Hirani’s simply taken the flavour of the story and adapted it. But it was an experience shooting on the IIT campus.
The boys (Aamir, Madhavan and Sharman Joshi) were there for a month-and-a-half and feeling 20 again. I shot for only one night. The students were a well-behaved bunch who gave us our space.
You’re in Race 2.. will you be a part of Golmaal 3?
Golmaal is a brand I’d be proud to be associated with. Rohit’s (Shetty) working on the script. (Smiles) I’ve told them to improve the girl’s role. Golmaal 2 wasn’t a great role for me but the film made lots of money.
You’re making big bucks too thanks to a dozen odd endorsements?
(Laughs) Eleven not 12, and all because of Geet. Even today kids see me and scream, “Bhatinda ki sikhni.” The film’s DVD has to start playing every evening at 7.30 pm sharp or my neice, Samaira, will not have dinner. Geet still has a great connect with the audience.
Shahid Kapur and you wil be returning in Milenge Milenge. Won’t your past come in the way of promoting the film?
No personal relationship will ever come between my work and me. I will definitely promote Milenge Milege. And for Boneyji’s (producer Boney Kapoor) sake I hope it does well. Satishji (director Satish Kaushuk) and I have given a big hit in the past, Mujhe Kuch Kehna Hai.
Mujhe kuch kehna hai. Will you sing Marjani marjani?
(Laughs) Shah Rukh (Khan) promised me the song would be a blockbuster. He was right! (Hums softly) Marjani marjani.
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