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Janhvi Kapoor on comparisons with Sridevi: I don’t think anyone can be like her

Newcomer Janhvi Kapoor says what her late mother Sridevi had to offer to films and people’s lives “was greater than what any artiste ever could”

bollywood Updated: Jul 10, 2018 08:33 IST
Prashant Singh
Prashant Singh
Hindustan Times
Janhvi Kapoor,Arjun Kapoor,Sridevi
Janhvi Kapoor during the media interaction of Dhadak in Mumbai.(IANS)

She is just 21 and has been dealing with the “media madness”, thanks to her big Bollywood debut vehicle, Dhadak but you can’t miss the sheer confidence and great poise in Janhvi Kapoor’s disposition. “I have never seen so much of myself or get spoken about. Also, I haven’t talked about myself this much, so it’s very weird,” admits late Sridevi and producer Boney Kapoor’s daughter, as she talks about career, her superstar mother and more.

Being Sridevi’s daughter, was acting on your mind right from the start?
Films were always the biggest part of my life. As far as I remember, everything has always revolved around movies. I really think films have shaped my moral compass as well. I think there was a phase in the middle when I sort of abandoned the idea as I wanted to explore other options but when I went for an acting course in LA, I had a euphoria kind of moment when I really felt something as an actor. After that, nothing else could match up to it. Then, you can’t go back to a 9-5 kind of job.

Boney Kapoor (C) poses for a picture with his daughters Janhvi Kapoor (L), Anshula Kapoor (2L) and Khushi Kapoor (R) and son Arjun Kapoor (2L) during the wedding reception of actress Sonam Kapoor and businessman Anand Ahuja. (AFP)

Once Dhadak releases, you will be instantly compared with your mother…
Yes, it’s true but I am not very excited about it (laughs). I think it’s just genetics and biology. I am her daughter so zaahir hai ki main unki tarah hi dikhungi. But my mum holds such a strong space in people’s heart and had a very personal connect. I hope I can please her fans also in some way in a bid to show gratitude for all the love she got. I hope I am given an opportunity to create my own identity. I don’t think anyone can be like her. What she had to offer to films and to people’s lives was greater than what any artiste could.

At this stage, are you nervous or excited?
I was only excited till promotions started but now itni baat karni pad rahi hai movie ke baare mein, that ab thodi bahut nervousness bhi ho rahi hai.

What makes you most nervous?
We have spent so much time with Dhadak. Almost the entire last year-and-a-half has been completely dedicated to this movie and its characters. Not just time, I invested a lot of myself as well in it, so there’s personal attachment. Also, so much happened during this time period that this is more than just a movie. Now, I am feeling a bit nervous to think that we are going to show it to the world. Aisa lag raha hai ki apne bache ko khule maidan mein chhod rahein hai pehli baar.

Janhvi Kapoor and Ishaan Khatter on the sets of show India's Best Dramebaaz Season 2 in Mumbai. (IANS)

Now that your mum isn’t around, you must be feeling a huge void?
Yes, I do feel a big void. Actually, I try not to think about it as much, though it’s very hard. But that void is there and it’s a constant. I think it’s something that I will always have to live with.

It could be too early to ask but what kind of films do you wish to do? Have any road map?
All kinds of films, especially the ones through which I can learn from my characters. After working in Dhadak, I think I have changed my outlook about people so I hope to continue doing films that can offer me that and through which I can touch people’s lives. I want to make people laugh and cry, and also personally affect their lives.

Of late, Arjun [Kapoor] has been extremely caring towards you…
The only reason we can stand strong after whatever happened is because of the kind of love and support Arjun bhaiyya and Anshula didi [half-siblings] have been giving us [she and her younger sister, Khushi]. It’s a family dynamic that I relish. I am very thankful for them. I couldn’t have asked for a better brother and a better sister. They have given us a lot of strength. He is a very wise man and has given tips like, ‘just be honest, be yourself and be respectful towards people.’ Somehow, when he says it, I take it like the gospel truth (laughs).

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First Published: Jul 10, 2018 08:28 IST