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I've a great relationship with Kareena's mom: Shahid Kapur

Shahid Kapur speaks to Shaikh Ayaz on his Bollywood, forthcoming films and his relationship with Kareena.

entertainment Updated: May 25, 2007 10:41 IST

It's become a journo norm nowadays.. and a convenient one for both sides. Sms a message, then the recipient messages back.. a time is fixed.. and in this case, the interviewee is on the dot when he calls back.

The sound is crystal clear, no interruptions.. though one can imagine the relative cool weather at the hill town he's shooting in right now.

Shahid Kapur sounds youngish, spontaneous.. though he does pause before questions that he feels are prying.. mercifully, he's not the sort to say, "Can we avoid that please?" He does his job, I do mine. The evidence:

Hello. From the look of things, you have cut down on your public appearances with Kareena Kapoor. Is that because, as a couple, you dread an overkill of publicity?

Kareena and I love going out. But when it comes to standalone bytes or quotes which have nothing to do with my film, I prefer not to talk at all.. in any case, we have both been out of town.. so where's the question of making public appearances?

You must have heard this.

When Randhir Kapoor was asked to suggest a pet name for you on

Koffee with Ka

ran, he said, "Dodo."

(Laughs) Did he say that? That's so sweet of him. The Kapoor family is known for its humour.. particularly the one-liners.

<b1>Is it true that Kareena's mother, Babita, doesn't approve of your relationship with her?

(Sternly) I don't talk about these things. Why should she have a problem with me? I have great respect for every member of Kareena's family. In fact, I share a great relationship with her mom.

Your dance guru Shiamak Davar says that you should have stuck with him for a while.. instead of branching out as an actor. Is there any problem between Shiamak and you?

Not at all. I take that as a compliment. It's really kind of him to think that I should have been with him.

Okay, I hear you had a blast in Manali. (Laughs)

Kind of.. and right now it's pretty beautiful in Shimla. Kareena and I have been shooting for Imtiaz's (Ali) film for a month now. We've shot in Manali, Khandala and Patiala.. soon we'll be off to Jaipur. It's a road film.. that's why we've been hopping from one place to another.

Your screen chemistry with Kareena hasn't worked in three films. Isn't Imtiaz Ali's film a gamble for you then?




36 Chinta Town

, I realised our pairing was bogged down by great expectations. I didn't anticipate such a strong reaction to our screen pair. That's when we sat back and allowed the storm to sweep by. It's after much deliberation that we signed this film.

Are you doing Raj Kumar Santoshi's film which pairs you with your father (Pankaj Kapur)?

I met Rajji. I'd love to work with him. But the ball is in my father's court. If he gives his go-ahead, the project should start soon.

What about editor Bela Sehgal's first directorial film with Rani Mukherji?
I don't know who the heroine is, but I can confirm that I'm doing Bela's film.

Can you tell me about Aziz Mirza's film with Vidya Balan?
It's a breezy love story, set mostly abroad.

Isn't it strange that your new bunch of films cast you opposite heroines who are older than you?
(Laughs out aloud) I never thought of that. I don't bother about such things. It's my director's prerogative to cast whoever he or she wants to.

, okay.Now what on earth are you doing in the star-packed Fool N Final?
I do have a substantial role. I did the film purely for emotional reasons.. for the director. Ahmed (Khan) has been a friend since years. And see, multi-starrers have clicked in the last few years. The advantage is that its success or failure can be shared by all the actors.. unlike solo hero films.

Look at Omkara.. there were so many actors..and all of them acted so brilliantly. (Laughs) I'd give a leg and a foot for Saif Ali Khan's role.

<b3>I can't imagine you playing Langda Tyagi. You look too young for the role.
You may be right.. perhaps after a few years, I could play such a role.

Do your boyish, chocolate looks sometimes limit you as an actor?
Not really.. other actors can't do what I can...and vice versa.

After Vivaah, is Sooraj Barjatya repeating you in his next film?
I do wish and hope that he casts me. But it's unlikely that he'll make a film in the near future. He takes time to make his movies. But let me wait patiently for his next film.. I'll call him then, (ha ha) I'll make a 1000 calls if I have to.

After Vivaah, you've become very pricey, going to the extent of hiking your price to Rs 1.5 crore a film. True?
(Laughs) Sorry dude, I don't discuss my price in print.. anyway, whatever I get after tax is very little. No yaar, just kidding.. I'm charging the price that I deserve.

For my first film (Ishq Vishk), I was paid less than Rs 1 lakh. At least, I'm in a better financial position today. Right now, my focus is not on making money.. it's on choosing the right projects.

Talk is that you've replaced Shah Rukh Khan in Aziz Mirza's camp and Salman Khan in Sooraj Barjatya's. Have you heard about that?
Yeah, I have. Someone told me about this.. and I could only laugh in response. I can never ever dream of replac ing the two actors that you've named. Com pared to them, I'm an under-achiever.

Also, I don't think there are camps in our business. (Laughs) Aren't they just tents of cloth in which people stay outdoors? No seriously, ‘campism' is a media-created word. For some, it may mean a com fort zone.

If a director and actor like Martin Scorsese and Robert De Niro, have a com fort level, that's great. It's like in cricket.. if the opening pair of batsmen are getting in the runs, why should they be changed?

First Published: May 24, 2007 16:06 IST