Ranbir Kapoor says that he’s doing the two most natural things – working hard and keeping his life as private as possible
Are you the I-just-give-it-my-best type of actor, or do you have expectations from your movies?
I absolutely have expectations from every film of mine, be it a comedy, a romantic film, or a coming-of-age film like Raajneeti, which is a political thriller. A lot of questions have been asked about why I’m changing my image, when I have an image of a certain kind. But, I think that I’m too new to have one particular image. I think it’s my fortune that I am getting opportunities to do such varying genres, with such eclectic directors, such great minds and such great co-stars. It’s just my good fortune.
Does this need to be ‘tagless’ arise from any fear of being typecast – perhaps as a chocolate boy?
Not at all. For me, being in the industry and being an actor is something that I was very passionate about. I didn’t have any fear or pressures. I came from a cool, filmi family, so, I didn’t have any fears of expectations or fears of comparison. Nothing. For me, it was the joy of being an actor, joy of being on the set, joy of having a van, joy of wearing make-up, enacting characters, etc. So, this entire notion of being an actor and what comes with an actor was very important to me.
Does acting come as naturally to you as it seems?
Acting is not easy. A lot of our youth is confused that to be an actor, you have to go to the gym, you have to take dance classes, learn horse riding, etc, and that’s how you become an actor. It’s not like that. You really have to understand movies, you must have something to say through your performances, you have to have some connect with characters, you have to have an emotional memory, you have to be intelligent, that’s very important for an actor – you have to be intelligent. You have to be adaptable to different situations.
What you see is the glamorous side – you see us in photo sessions, wearing dark glasses and good clothes. But, that’s just a perception one needs to maintain because you are an actor, and somewhere people look up to you. But there’s a lot of hard work, there are a lot of sacrifices, there’s a lot of intelligence… there are a lot of things that go into being an actor.
What kind of sacrifices?
You don’t have a life. You know, you are like a gypsy. You don’t have time to spend with your family. You’re shooting at the most odd hours. You don’t have a disciplined life. Sometimes, you’re waking up at six in the morning; sometimes you are waking up at four in the afternoon. I’m not saying that there are sacrifices that drastically change your life, but still, it’s hard work. It’s not as easy as it seems.
Does the gruelling routine bother you?
I enjoy it, because it’s given me so much. Being an actor, I don’t look at it like a sacrifice. Probably a third person might look at it like that, when they ask me about what my life is like. But I enjoy it. Even when I have a conversation with a friend, I can’t talk beyond movies. That’s the only thing I know how to talk about. Fortunately or unfortunately, that’s the only thing I want to talk about.
Doesn’t that annoy your friends?
Absolutely, absolutely. And I feel a sense of empathy towards them. But, if you want to talk to me, that’s perhaps the only thing I’ll talk about. If you want to talk to me about something else, don’t expect me to talk to you about it. I’ll listen to you.
You’re a contemporary rebel – unlike others your generation, you talk about your relationships and yet refuse to join social networking sites. Why?
Apart from whatever I said about being an actor, you also need to be a good and honest person. I’m doing something normal – working hard. For me, it’s a normal life of waking up in the morning, going to the sets, coming back home, and going back to sleep. So, for me, it’s not something that I’m doing that I’m scared of or ashamed of. If somebody asks me something about my profession, I’ll give you an honest answer. But, if you want to know everything about my personal life and who I had dinner with last night, then yes, it does disturb me.
When I started out, I was in a relationship and I was young, and I did speak about such things. I’m not saying that I’ll not speak about such things now, that I’ll hide my relationships, but there’s a certain line that I don’t think an actor should cross with the media or the media should cross with the actor.
How about the other part of the question?
Twitter, FB, these are all great social networking sites, but it’s your choice. I have nothing intelligent to say there. I’d rather speak to my fans through my interviews, through you or through the films I have done. Apart from that, I’m an introvert, I’m shy… I’d like to preserve the little bit of life that I can. People hear about us all the time, people see us all the time; so, it’s just a personal choice. It’s just that I, personally, as Ranbir, don’t have anything intelligent or fun to say through such things.
How much is too much when it comes to your relationships?
Well, if you ask me if I’m in a relationship, I’ll say yes, I’m in a relationship. But, if you ask me what the fight was about last night, you don’t need to know. I mean, that’s a line you need to respect. But, yes, if I’m going out for dinner with a particular person and if I go out for dinner again with that particular person, and if you ask me, if I’m in a relationship with that person, I’d say yes, I’d say no. But, ask me till there. Don’t ask me questions after that. Don’t manipulate questions and ask me, ‘Are your parents against it?’, or things like these. These really hurt, they cause a lot of negativity, a lot of heartache… it creates negativity around you and that’s very hard to live with.
It bothers one a great deal. I truly pray that it stops at some point and people start respecting an actor’s privacy and start talking about an actor’s work more than this. I understand the curiosity. But it’s my life and I am selfish about it. I will try and protect it as much as I can.
How would you describe yourself in five words?
Receptive, hardworking, (sorry for sounding immodest, but) talented, a good person, and shy.