The Hreturn

Published On: 2012-10-29

Author: Sunaina Kumar

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The Hreturn



Source: Indian Express 

By: Sunaina Kumar 

Date: May 21, 2006 



His modesty and down-to-earthniess is part of film folklore, yet it still catches you by surprise when you experience it first hand. Hrithik Roshan apologises for the delay in taking out time to speak to eye, and then says that it’s his pleasure to be part of the interview. And that sets the tone for the conversation, with the 32-year-old star at his earnest best. This summer will perhaps be the most important one of Hrithik’s life and career. He became a father on March 28, and his biggest film ever, Krrish, is releasing next month. 


He hasn’t had a release in two years—his last film, Lakshya, opened in June 2004. And he desperately needs a hit—a big hit, a really big one—to reclaim the deityhood he achieved literally overnight with his debut vehicle Kaho Na Pyar Hai. In the six years since then, he has had only two big hits, Koi Mil Gaya and Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham—K3G’s success was surely more due to hit machine Karan Johar’s cry-till-you- die formula than Hrithik—and one moderate one, Mission Kashmir. Leading Hrithik to take a career-defining gamble; he stopped signing films to concentrate wholly and solely on home production Krrish. Quite simply, he has bet his everything on his father’s and his own ideas and abilities. And now Krrish is ready for the world to see. And judge. How does it feel? He sounds hopeful, cautious and wary at the same time.“If all things go well and according to plan, Krrish will see the birth of the first Indian superhero.” He adds a caveat, just in case, “That is, if my father and I are fortunate enough.” 


The Roshans have put in everything they had into Krrish. At a budget of Rs 40 crore, it’s one of the most expensive Hindi movies ever made.One-fourth of it—Rs 10crore —has been spent on action sequences, the likes of which, the Roshans claim, have never been seen in India before. Quite possibly,since they have been created by Hong-Kong based action director Tony Ching Siu Tung whose previous work includes Shaolin Soccer, House of Flying Daggers and Kill Bill. The Rs 15 crore worth of special effects have been supervised by Marc Kolbe and Craig Mumma, whose CV boasts blockbusters like Godzilla and Independence Day. For one action sequence, Hrithik had to train for a month to master a jump of 30 feet tied to invisible wires. For the mixing of the film, the background score was done in Prague, the sound effects in Australia, and the special effects in Los Angeles. Everything had to be larger than life, and just perfect; after all, Krrish is Indian cinema’s first foray into the superhero genre. Yet, Hrithik would like to stress the emotional core of the film. “It’s being seen as a superhero film, but that’s not the motivation of the film. It’s a simple film about a grandma and her grandson and the circumstances that urge him to use his powers. The love story between Krrish and Priya is also very important. A film cannot run on special effects, it must have an emotional crux.” And he makes Krrish sound as real and believable as he himself is. “He is one of the most natural and real superheroes. He’s unlike anything one has seen before.” Already there’s talk of a sequel. But Hrithik would rather not preempt it. “I would love it if there’s a Krrish 2, but things have to go right for this film before we can plan another.” Coincidentally, the other big and much speculated upon film that he is working in happens to be a sequel. 


Dhoom 2 promises even more thrills and spills than its predecessor, about tough men on tougher bikes chasing and racing one another under the pretext of perpetrating and solving various crimes. And in D2, Hrithik actually plays a villain! A bad man, with that angelic face and that swoonworthy smile? Here, but, one gets that rare moment of swagger. “He’s a lovable villain, and he’s lovable because I’m playing him,” he jokes. “I’ve been waiting a long time to play a character like him. He’s suave, classy, westernised and a man of few words.” In real life, Hrithik is seen as the film industry’s Mr Nice Guy, so most of the roles that have come to him have also been reflective of that persona. “I’ve always been the good, sweet guy. This is quite a departure for me, and very exciting. Which is why I’ve been waiting for something like this.” He has now decided that it will be one film at a time for him. Because, he says, he likes to live each character he plays. 


After wrapping up D2, he will don the mantle of Akbar in Ashutosh Gowariker’s Jodha Akbar and will then move on to Zoya Akhtar’s film, a love story. “I have my hands full with Krrish and Dhoom 2. Jodha Akbar is in pre-production and we start shooting in September. I base my decisions to sign films purely on instinct. If I can be honest to a film, I would even take on 10 films in a year. But I would rather complete one and move to the next.” He’s also going to look different in all his forthcoming films. In Krrish, he sports long flowing locks, and his brand new look in D2 is one of the film’s most closely guarded secrets, though there have been enough leaks to establish that it’ll involve blonde hair and bandannas. With the rise of John Abraham and Abhishek Bachchan, Bollywood has discovered male sex symbols with a vengeance, strengthening a trend that Hrithik, with his perfectly chiselled face and to-die-for body, pioneered. “It’s a good thing that it’s not just women who’re objects of desire now,” he says. 


“We’re in a visually stimulating medium, so what one sees should be appealing. We as a society have become more body conscious and an actor’s first impression is his body. I totally endorse this trend.” So we ask him about his most difficult role: Being father to little Hrehaan. Fatherhood has taught him some totally new lessons. “With Hrehaan, I’ve found so much peace. The love I feel for him has sprung from nowhere, it’s just in-built. And, like they say, you can never know this love till you actually experience it.” Ask him who Hrehaan resembles the most—Hrithik, or wife Suzanne and pat comes the reply, “I’m sure he’ll have the best of both of us.” So like Hrithik to hope for the best.