According to Hrithik Roshan, who Jyothi Venkatesh has known from the time he was a tiny tot working with Rajnikant in his father Rakesh Roshan’s home production Bhagwaan Dada, the definition of a successful man does not depend on how much money he is making or for that matter how many films he has in his hands. “On the contrary, I am of the opinion that if you are a slave of time, you are not at all successful, as far as your life or career is concerned. I would suggest that every one, however busy he or she would be, should take time to pursue his or her passion and do time management”.
According to Hrithik Roshan, TV is all about content. “As far as I am concerned, every dance form is different. I make it a point to start from zero when I start dancing and I keep on rehearsing till I drop dead. I want to propagate the right vision of dance. I want to make it very clear that it is not just about looking aesthetically. You should just treat dancing as a form of expression and should enjoy dancing even if in the process you end up looking stupid and foolish, because the idea, all said and done, is to just let yourself go.”
Hrithik Roshan is humble enough to concede that though he is happy that he has become a symbol for dance amongst the youth of the nation as well as the world today and blessed with the art of dancing, he does not consider that he is the Greek God. “I do not even consider myself the best dancer in either our own country or the neighborhood. My idol as far as dancing goes is Michael Jackson. I feel that he is the true God of dance for all times. I revered Shammi Kapoor as the true God of formless dance. You see, to understand dance is a great gift. I confess that I can dance well but I just cannot visualize or choreograph a dance number. For that I have to seek the help of Farha Khan or for that matter Vaibhavi, because I feel that choreography is even a greater act, than just dancing.
On His Dad
“My dad is a very strong person he has never empowered any kind of weakness. If I express my weakness to him, he never comes forward with sympathy. Krrish is a manifestation of his own being the fact that my dad thought of a film about a superhero and the fact that all his films are about the underdog. That’s how he saw his own life’s journey. He is a man with no ego and is always ready for suggestions from fellow directors of his generation and my generation. He has gone through a lot in the past there was a time when he had no money to buy groceries, he was removed from his house. We shifted to my mother’s parent’s house but my dad lived with his friend till he could arrange the money. He got a new house and we had no furniture at all. We used to sleep on the floor for two nights after which he made the house. It taught me that there was a lot behind the glitz and the glamour. I feel blessed to have those teachings of the past that I can pass on to my children.
“All that I am and all that I have learnt, I have learnt first from him. He has been my teacher from his past experience. He has taught me a lot. Look where he is coming from and the kind of films he is making. If he did not exist, then there would be no genre of superhero or alien films that would be convincing enough to be successful. He is always pushing the bar and when he shies away from doing that, I am there to remind him that he needs to. When we talk about me and my father, we are two different individuals from different school of thought. He is old as in gold and I have grown up watching superhero films. i feel glad that I got to contribute to Krrish in many ways. We both have arguments but the best thing is we work without ego. We have arguments, but the one thing that is obvious is that I am not fighting for my suggestion and he is not, for his idea. We fight for the best idea for the film. So either he convinces me or I convince him.
Hrithik says that he is thankful to God that his dad has no ego at all, right from the time when he was doing his first film as an actor- Kaho Na Pyar Hai. “I have a great professional relationship with dad as an actor. While doing Kaho Na Pyar Hai, I had told my dad that the character of Raj that I had played in the film should have a pair of spectacles and also be clean shaven. Sometimes I am wrong too. Sometimes dad convinces me. I have learnt from my dad that you have to first kill your ego in creativity, because there is no truth in the whole world but only point of view, as far as filmmaking is concerned. My dad is still passionate about his work. I am glad because I am aware of the fact that there are several fathers and sons who fight and separate”.
As an actor, Hrithik confesses that he got a lot of help from Sanjay Leela Bhansali while working in his Guzarish. “I had to actually unlearn whatever I had learnt as an actor when I set out to act in Guzarish under the direction of Sanjay Leela Bhansali. Aishwarya also helped me discover a new part of my art”.
Though Hrithik has no regrets that he had acted in Kites, he shyly confesses that he was actually hesitant to take the film up, when his dad narrated the subject to him, because his knee was in a very bad shape and he could not even walk then. “In fact, I was so frustrated that I had even thought that I should take up an alternate career like say singing or direction since I was doubtful whether I would be back on my feet. I thought that I could no more jump or dance and I did not want to take the risk of doing a film as an actor because I was shattered to the core”.
Hrithik admits frankly that when he asked his dad why he wanted Anurag Basu to direct the film instead of directing it himself, he told him that he wanted Anurag Basu, because he was already 60 and had also done all kinds of films till date and hence very keen to learn what the perspective of the new generation of directors like Anurag Basu is”.
On singing for Kites
Hrithik, who also happens to be the grandson of music director Roshan and the nephew of music director Rajesh Roshan had also sung for Kites. “Anurag told me that whether I am a good singer or a bad one, it was inevitable that I should sing in the film. He argued that if I were to use a playback singer, I would not
be able to be honest to the film and my character in it. I do not consider myself a singer at all, but in order to be honest to my character, I went along with everybody. Eventhough it was not professional singing and it’s not perfect voice-wise, it renders honesty on screen. I managed to get about only two weeks for my rehearsals but I recorded the song in my own voice for my uncle Rajesh Roshan”.
Hrithik confesses. “I even want to do ten films a year, but I am not able to. It isn’t a choice but the problem is that just one film itself takes a year for me to complete. I was initially asked to dole out just 80 days for Jodha Akbar but eventually I ended up giving as many as 200 days for the film, because a film that I set out to do becomes my film and not just the producer’s film and I cannot just abandon it by leaving it mid-way, especially since all the directors that I have worked with till date are like my dad, including the younger ones whether it is Zoya, Farhan or Anurag Basu.”
Fitness, as far as Hrithik Roshan is concerned, is a way of life, though he jokes that actually, he gets paid to be fit. “Our body is the only thing that we truly own. We should make full use and take care of it. The more you take care of your body, the happier you get. I really believe in the age old adage – ‘Health is Wealth’. If you have good health, everything else will follow. I have a thin frame, but I work out for a week before I need to shoot a scene that requires me to show my body”, confesses Hrithik, who modestly confesses that still, he does not have the fittest or the best body in Bollywood.
Hrithik adds, “Everyone is making me out to be a Greek God, but trust me, I’m not. I do stuff like bench press and a lot of cardio. Then I do some weights once in a while. I do a lot of exercise for the whole body and concentrate on my biceps and triceps. At times there seemed to be an imbalance with big biceps and triceps and a thin body. I am not very well built and do not have a lot of tendon. That could explain why I look muscular in some scenes and why I look thin in some frames. It’s a myth to presume that I have got a lot of muscles. You can see that in my films too. The truth is that I have very little muscles. My schedules are so tight that I do not have the time to build muscles. You need enough time in a day to build muscles”.
Hrithik admits that normally, he just does his routine exercises and does not work out for more than 40 minutes in a day, before he goes to sleep. “My schedule is such that I return home pretty late. Hence I need to work out only then. It is only when I am in India that I catch up on at least an hour of exercise. This happens between 12.30 and 1.30 in the night. I sleep after that. If I do not work out, I cannot sleep, though workouts also put me to sleep”.
In what way are the Hrithik Roshan of Kaho Na Pyar Hai and the Hrithik Roshan of Kaabil different? I ask Hrithik to look back at his career and analyse. Pat comes the candid as well as honest reply, “The Hrithik Roshan of Kaho Na Pyar Hai 17 years ago was running to finish line as if a dog was about to bite him, because he had to win and had no choice whatsoever but today he runs because he enjoys running though he knows that the dog is not chasing him and also there is no finishing line”
Hrithik concedes that it is true that he has become mellowed over the years. “I have less stress and tension because I do not believe in getting provoked by any one. If say someone says that my dad is a takloo, I do not get irked, because it is a fact that my dad is a takloo.”
“Work on the script of our own home production Krrish 4 is going on in full swing right now, though we have not really locked in my dates for the project to be directed by my father. I need to conquer time management. I do not restrict my work according to time. You just cannot restrict creativity and passion and ill I reach what I want to get, I will continue with my efforts, however time consuming or laborious they may prove to be”.
Gungho about Super 30
Hrithik Roshan is now gungho about his next film that goes on the floors, Super 30. The film, directed by Vikas Bahl, is based on the life of the mathematical genius Anand Kumar from Bihar. Hrithik was so impressed with the script, that he decided to go ahead. While he does not divulge too much about the film, he makes his intent and excitement rather obvious.
“Right now, only the announcement has been made. I am very excited because I am on the heels of doing an inspiring film called Super 30. For us, our teachers are the stars — these are the people who mould and help the human species progress,” he philosophizes, rather ambiguously. After Super 30, Hrithik Roshan will proceed to shoot for the yet-untitled YRF film with Tiger Shroff and Vaani Kapoor.