John put a smile on my face : Hrithik

Published On: 2017-12-23

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John put a smile on my face : Hrithik



Source: TOI 

Date: November 11, 2010 



Hrithik Roshan's role as a quadriplegic in Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Guzaarish releasing worldwide on November 19, the filmmaker believes, will immortalise the actor. Hrithik is too modest to react to this compliment. Instead, he shares the story of his personal bond with the man who is responsible for his superlative performance. Says the actor, "Whatever I have done in Guzaarish is courtesy John Julius. He's the first quadriplegic I met and it affected me in a lot of ways. I had to brace myself for the meeting. I knew it could be awkward and perhaps even sad. I kept wondering what I would say to make John feel good. But I was in for a real surprise. Exactly the opposite happened. 


For five hours John made me laugh. I forgot all about my own stress. When I came out it occurred to me that John, though a quadriplegic, had the power to put a smile on my face. That is when I realised the dignity and the spirit with which these people live. I then decided to portray a character that could put a smile on the audience's face.'' Taking a deep breath, Hrithik says that Guzaarish and John taught him priceless lessons. "When you go through darkness and depression and rise above it, you realise that the world is such a happy bright place. That is the gift that I will be giving through the film. After seeing Guzaarish, whoever you are, whatever you may be going through, I promise you will come out saying that life is good. John has helped me with the character by confiding in me his innermost thoughts and what he goes through in life. Hand in hand we have walked through this journey." 


Hrithik and John also forged a personal relationship. The actor tried to find out what he could do to make John more comfortable. "We came across the stem cell replacement therapy,'' says the actor, eyes welling up with tears. "We got the treatment done and the next morning when I met John, I realised that for the first time after seven years he could take out his shirt and wear it on his own," says Hrithik. "Three months after this he sent me a photograph standing next to a windowsill. I'm happy that the physiotherapy and the treatment are helping him.'' And John Julius says of his new friend, "Hrithik has been like an older brother. He has supported me emotionally, financially and I can share all my thoughts with him. When I tell people about him, they refuse to believe me unless I dial Hrithik's number and speak to him in front of them."