Karan Johar has judged more than a couple of TV shows; some even for multiple seasons. But tell the filmmaker that he seems to be a pro at it now and he points out that it requires a lot of effort. “I can’t say it’s challenging, but you have to get your tone right because your comments make a big difference to the contestants, who are working very hard,” he says, adding, “I don’t do this as a hobby or for fun. I’m paid for it, but I do it with passion.”
All set for his second season of dance reality show Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa, Karan has surprised everyone with his knowledge of TV actors. But in his opinion, the popularity of stars on the small screen is on the decline. “Their popularity is diminishing. We don’t have any other Ram Kapoor or Ronit Roy (among the younger lot). I don’t think there’s a mania for TV stars, which existed earlier. I hope it changes soon. Plus, our films can now be compared to the west in terms of narrative and technology, but one can’t say that for TV shows,” he says.
Many have argued that judging on TV isn’t serious business. The filmmaker defends, “You can’t treat it frivolously. Careers depend on what you say. And if judging on TV was that easy, everyone would be doing it well. Only a few manage to make a mark as judges, as the contribution needs to be 100 per cent.”
Meanwhile, Karan’s rapport with his co-judge Remo D’Souza has extended beyond the show. The two are working on a film which Karan will produce and Remo will direct. Are there plans to work with the third judge, Madhuri Dixit, too? “I’d love to. She’s one of the greatest actors we have, and I can’t wait to work with her,” says the filmmaker.