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Arjun Kapoor reminds me of Akshay Kumar: Namaste England director Vipul Shah

Filmmaker Vipul Shah is in awe of his Namaste England actor Arjun Kapoor, and feels that he’s not only terrific, but pretty underrated too.

bollywood Updated: Jul 07, 2018 15:59 IST
Monika Rawal Kukreja
Monika Rawal Kukreja
Hindustan Times
Vipul Shah,Namaste England,Akshay Kumar
Filmmaker Vipul Shah has directed Namaste England after a gap of eight years.(Prodip Guha)

Filmmaker Vipul Shah donned the director’s hat after a hiatus of eight years and this time, he got to work with much younger actors, Arjun Kapoor and Parineeti Chopra, in his upcoming film, Namaste England. Having mostly worked with senior actors such as Akshay Kumar, Ajay Devgn, Salman Khan, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan among others, Shah says the younger actors also brought “great energy” on set and though he missed his friends, he made some more while working on this film. In a candid chat, the filmmaker talks about the “modern approach” young crop of actors follow, what makes Arjun and Akshay alike and more.

Read | Akshay Kumar had warned me about his look in Action Replay, says Vipul Shah

How was the experience of working with younger actors in Namaste England?

As far as working style is concerned, they [younger actors] are as professional as the senior ones. And luckily, I’ve always worked with actors who are hugely committed and passionate about the work that they are doing. In that sense, both Arjun and Parineeti are very committed, passionate, extremely professional and well behaved. The only thing is that earlier with all my other actors, I was a junior partner and in this one, I am the senior. So, that’s the only difference in the relationship.

Is there anything you feel has changed now ?

Today’s generation is far more aware and exposed to world cinema and that reflects in their approach towards the work they do. That’s the only thing I feel is slightly different. Also, this young crop of actors has seen their senior counterparts very closely, so, somewhere, the behaviour pattern is very similar and in terms of their approach, it’s more modern, considering cinema is a constantly evolving process. Hence, their approach is ‘less is more’ that is wonderful.

When you returned to direction after years, did you miss Akshay on the set?

Working with Akshay has been a great pleasure, so you always miss having someone like him around. Yes, there is a great comfort level with him, as we’ve worked on so many films together, so obviously that feeling was there. But then, Arjun reminds me a lot of Akshay; we got to know each other better and now he’s a dear friend too.

What similarities do you see between Akshay and Arjun?

Arjun is quite like Akshay — very punctual and loves to keep the set funny and very light and he’s extremely committed to his work. In that sense, I was very happy to work with Arjun. I feel he is terrific and a pretty underrated actor to my mind because what I’ve experienced with him while shooting for this film, he is a much evolved actor. I think people will agree with me very soon. So, that was a wonderful revelation to me and I hope audience also sees that.

Taking a franchise forward, what are your expectations from Namaste England?

This is not a sequel to Namstey London. But if you’ve seen the previous film, this will remind you of that. So, that’s why I’m calling it Namaste England, as it’s a similar world but not the same franchise going forward.

Interact with Monika Rawal Kukreja at Twitter/@monikarawal

First Published: Jul 07, 2018 15:59 IST