You simply vanished from the scene!
I was around. I haven’t had a release since Elaan (2005). I was busy doing commercials and hosting live shows. I also worked for the Discovery channel. I was reading scripts.. none appealed to me..so no new releases. Apart from that, I’ve been travelling a lot.. for work and at other times just like that.
You’ve been around for almost nine years and have acted in only nine films.
I don’t believe in numbers. I can only choose from the projects I’ve been offered.
Don’t you believe in approaching filmmakers for work?
How does one do that? How does one go and ask for work? Maybe by mingling..at parties. I don’t believe in the theory that ‘you get work by partying.’
Since you’re very selective, is Raqeeb, your next release, your kind of film?
I liked the story. I’ve never done a murder mystery. Raqeeb is just that.
Were you apprehensive about working with Raqeeb’s first-time director Anurag Singh?
Yes. I won’t deny that I was a bit apprehensive initially. But the project is backed by an established producer-director Raj Kanwar. I felt this would balance out. Anurag has been an assistant director for years. Before signing the project, I had several discussions with him to see if he’s capable of handling the project. I found that he was and I went ahead with it. (Laughs) Also, I wanted to do something commercial.
<b1>Working in films like Earth and Bawandar..did that become a black mark against you?
I don’t understand the line between meaningful and commercial cinema. Look, Rang De Basanti, Omkara and Lage Raho Munnabhai – they are all commercial success but decidedly different.
It’s an interesting time for Indian cinema. Run-of-the-mill type of films doesn’t exist anymore. Techniques have changed..marketing plays a big role.
What has happened to your father’s production house?
You’ll have to speak to him about his production house.
Why haven’t you done any International project after 3 am and The Emperor’s Club?
I’m not doing any foreign film at the moment. I don’t really look at one language, country or region. The world is very small, cinema brings it closer.
Are you open to acting in South Indian movies?
Sure, why not? As long as I don’t have to speak in a language I don’t know. (Laughs)
Were you disheartened that Deepa Mehta didn’t offer you Water?
She actually offered me Water but I couldn’t be a part of it. It was a wonderful film. But it couldn’t win on Oscar. Let’s not forget it’s a huge achievement even to make it to the final five.