Karan Johar on ‘nepotism rocks’ chant: We went a bit too far with the Kangana mention

Director Karan Johar has apologised for his ‘nepotism rocks’ remarks at the IIFA awards in New York on Saturday.

bollywood Updated: Jul 19, 2017 09:05 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Karan Johar,Nepotism,Kangana Ranaut
Bollywood actor Saif Ali Khan (R) and director/producer Karan Johar host the IIFA Award.(AFP)

After Varun Dhawan’s apology, Karan Johar has also expressed regret at his ‘nepotism rocks’ chant at the 18th India International Film Awards (IIFA) in New York on Saturday. The director said he took full responsibility for the joke which was ‘entirely his idea.’

In an interview to NDTV, Karan said he ‘obviously doesn’t think that nepotism rocks.’ “Of course I don’t believe that ‘nepotism rocks’. Of course, I believe that only talent rocks. If anything that rocks, it’s your talent, hard work and conviction. It’s the energy you bring to your job. What we said was meant to be a joke, which I think has been misplaced, misunderstood and I think it went wrong. I regret it,” he said.

“The idea of that joke was entirely mine, so I take onus of the idea of what we said. And I think we went a bit too far with the Kangana mention,” he added.

Bollywood actor Saif Ali Khan (R) and director/producer Karan Johar perform on stage during the IIFA Awards of the 18th International Indian Film Academy. (AFP)

He also addressed his ‘issues with Kangana’ in the interview: “No matter what I say or feel about my issues with what Kangana said on my talk show Koffee With Karan, I think I was raised to be a dignified, a chivalrous, and a decent person. That’s the upbringing that I was given and I feel that I failed on those accounts. I felt that no matter what my thoughts or personal issues on this, I should not have repeatedly brought that up. For that, I’m deeply regretful.”

Karan said that he wants the matter now closed with the interview and assured Kangana and his fans that he will no longer talk about nepotism or bring up Kangana’s name. “I want to once and for all say and close this chapter after this and subsequently I will not speak about nepotism nor Kangana because it would be distrustful for her and it would be ungraceful at my end, which I’ve already been. Nepotism is easy access, nobody can deny that, but what you do with that access is what moulds you into a professional.””

Karan and Saif Ali Khan, who were hosting the gala, revisited the much-talked about nepotism issue that started in Bollywood when actor Kangana Ranaut branded Karan as a “flagbearer of nepotism” on his chat show Koffee With Karan.

Kangana Ranaut during her appearance on Koffee With Karan.

When Varun joined the two actors on stage at the Metlife Stadium to receive the Best Performance in a Comic Role for Dishoom, Saif joked that the actor had made it big in the industry because of his father. “You are here because of your papa,” Saif quipped. Varun said: “And you’re here because of your mummy (veteran actor Sharmila Tagore).”

Karan then promptly added: “I am here because of my papa (late filmmaker Yash Johar).” They then said in unison: “Nepotism rocks”. The trio then broke into Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham song, ‘Bole Churiyan, Bole Kangana’, to which Karan said “Kangana na hi bole toh accha hai (It’s better if Kangana doesn’t speak).”

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First Published: Jul 19, 2017 09:03 IST