The Making of A Superstar Son!

Published On: 2012-06-04

Author: unknown

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The Making of A Superstar Son!

Source: Café Celeb

Submitted by Vanita

When Rakesh Roshan unveiled his son Hrithik to the film industry with a dynamic debut in Kaho Na Pyaar Hai, he left the entire industry marveling at the superstar! The light-eyed boy literally took the industry by storm. They said he took steroids to build that body of his, they said light-eyes heroes don’t last, and they said that he could be a fluke. But! The father-son duo proved them all wrong!

They rocked as he danced, they gasped as he sang and they swooned as he romanced!

And HE is here to STAY.

Café Celeb meets the father for a tete-a-tete on the making of his son and the star- Hrithik Roshan.

It was Raj Kapoor who first did it with Bobby. Rishi Kapoor, an actor par excellence and a star was born in 1973. This kind of set a trend for fathers to launch their sons and thus make stars out of them, coining a tag ‘Star Son’ which has its own pros and cons for those who are and those who are not.

Sunil Dutt launched Sanjay Dutt inRocky, Vinod Khanna launched Akshaye with Himalayaputra;Fardeen made a dashing debut in father Feroz Khan’s Prem Agan.

After a long span of time, Rakesh Roshan, the already established actor, director, producer gave a gift to the film industry, which transformed the entire equilibrium of Bollywood and created a staggering impact.

Finding Rakesh Roshan’s office is not difficult today, even though its in a very inconspicuous area, a by-lane in the suburbs and an old building with a rickety staircase leading you to the office of one of the most successful producers and directors today. The name Roshan rings the bell and everybody I ask for directions wants to personally drop me there…just incase they can have a look at the superstar! Posters of KNPH and Koi Mil…Gaya, dominate the walls. The proud father is all smiles and begins ecstatically, “As a father I surely feel very proud of him. As a director too, I know he is very talented. And I knew that since his childhood because I know his passion towards work. Whatever task Hrithik took up, he didn’t leave it half way; it was done successfully. Like if he picked up cycling he would do it the best. So these little things made me confident that if he decides to do something he puts his heart and soul and he does it, by hook or crook.”

That was the father in him, when did the director discover the actor in Hrithik?

“Actually there was a role in Bhagwan Dada, when I was producing the movie, we decided to take him at the last moment and I was too scared the he would muck up everything, but the very first shot he gave, made me realize that he has something special in him that he is also unaware of. When a director says ‘start, sound, action’, some people totally go dumb and some people brighten up. Here was a kid who brightened up. So I knew Hrithik would make it some day. Then when I asked him what he wanted to do when he was studying in college, he said he wanted to join films. So I thought the best way he could join films was by being my assistant director because I myself began that way,” explains Rakesh.

Why not an actor immediately when Bhagwan Dada proved his bit?

Rakesh smiles, “You tend to learn a lot more on the sets than just by sitting at home and joining some acting classes. You know exactly what goes behind the camera, what happens on the sets, how films are made, what are the tedious problems one has to go through, and ultimately how you solve the problems because every minute, every hour is a problem. Light fuse ho gaya, problem, Khaana theek se nahin bana, problem, clouds aa gaya, problem, too much heat, problem. Actors are unaware of all these problems because they sit comfortably inside the van. Being an actor first and then becoming a producer-director, I know exactly what the problems are. So I told him if he wants to join films, then he has to come on the sets and experience and see everything in person. And he did. He was with me for 5 years, worked with me for 3 films. But Hrithik was like any of my assistants on sets; I never took him in my car. He had to go in the auto or the bus. Even after pack up; he was not allowed to come with me; he had to go alone. So I made him see what life is. Even when we use to go for outdoor shootings, we used to stay in 5 star hotels and he used to stay with the unit, sharing a room with 2 other assistants. Sometimes he use to come and say ‘the water is not good, can I come and have a bath in your room?” this is what I made him go through because this is what one must know. But he did that very willingly and never grumbled about it. He enjoyed his work and he enjoyed staying more with the assistants that being around with stars, actors.”

So was it learning and struggling for a very long time? When was the actor discovered?

With a twinkle in his eyes, the proud father tells, “I always thought that when he would be 25, I would launch him, but after koyla, the time had come. He was very confident on the first day of shooting; the first shot he gave was a very confident one.”

Was the confidence executed because the director was his own father? Any such doubts were put to rest.

“When I work, when I’m on the sets, relations don’t count at all. I am only the director on the sets. I have been angry, I’ve scolded him in front of the whole unit and I treat him as one of the actors of the film and not my son. He’s never late on my sets because he knows what the consequences would be. Even when we were shooting for KNPH or KMG, we never discussed the scene I was going to take up the next day. If he has to ask me something, he would ask only on the sets, not at home. I’m very disciplined when it comes to work; otherwise I am a soft person. I don’t have an attitude problem. If you can convey the same thing with your own feelings, own expressions, that’s fine. If you’re called at 7 in the morning, then you’ve got to be there. If you’ve genuine problems, that’s ok. But if I call you for a shot, then you’ve to come immediately. I loose my temper if that’s not done.” Rakesh’s mischievous told a lot about what he could subject his actor to, never mind the son apart.

But did he every predict such a huge success?

“I never imagined KNPH would be such a big success. When you’re making a movie, you don’t know what’s going to happen. Nobody can predict the success of a film. But I always knew that he’s a good actor, he’ll definitely get good work. But the movie fave him a big push and honestly, he did a splendid job as an actor. He pulled the movie alone because of his charm and made it a huge success,” says a doting father.

None can deny Hrithik’s competence, he had seen Shahrukh, Anil Kapoor and Jackie working, he had grasped a lot from them. It did help because when Rakesh used to sit for his story sessions, Hrithik use to join in. this, he got the knack of everything, what was on the directors mind, what did he want, etc.

But wasn’t Hrithik hyped much before the release of the film? What if he hadn’t proven worthy? Did it scare the father-producer?

“Before the release of the film, I wanted Hrithik to sign some films, because you never know what can happen with films. I may be confident but if luck is not with me, the movie might go for a full toss. I screened the film to show it to film makers like Yash Chopra, Vidhu Vinod, Subash Ghai, Sooraj Bharjatya, even when the film was not ready. They all started liking him. See, filmmakers are always scared and insecure, even an actor is. When I made Koyla, Karan Arjun, the insecurity was always there. I spent sleepless nights on thinking whether the subject is ok, will the audience like it, and will it be successful, it’s a gamble. But success gives you confidence and if you’re honest with your work, then confidence will always help you. But if you’re not honest then the confidence can take you somewhere else also. Actually, the more insecure you are, the feel the more secure you are. Feedback from other established filmmakers gave me the confidence.”

What was so striking that Hrithik became such a hit?

“I think his honesty and sincerity comes across on the screen. That’s why he’s where he is now. My first priority was that the film should be good. I can’t just take any actor. I have to first make a film for myself as a director and producer. It was only 2 weeks prior to the release of the film, I started praying to God that, ‘I’ve done my duty, but this boy is my son and his career should movie ahead.” Says an emotional father.

Now is Hrithik the first choice for all his films?

“I always have Hrithik in mind when I make films. Nobody could have imagined making a film like KMG. I had to go one step ahead after KNPH with KMG. So I chose that subject because I knew that Hrithik would perform his role. I took a big risk. A hero who’s not a conventional one, yet has to carry the entire film on his shoulders is very difficult, but he has proved it,” Rakesh adds.

There was a time when critics had written him off even after Mission Kashmir and Fiza. Does he feel his son is safe only in his hands?

“Actually, luck plays a big part. Maybe he was not all that lucky to work with other filmmakers, but that was a time when those filmmakers were going through a bad phase. If I’ve to make a third film with Hrithik now, its not necessary that it has to be a hit because even I might go through a bad phase. Khudgarz was a big hit; Khoon Bhari Maang was a hit too. For me, it’s making a film. When I go on the sets I don’t see that he’s my son, so I should put him in front of the camera. No, whichever scene requires him, he’s utilized well,” puts Rakesh modestly.

What was his advice to Hrithik when he entered his industry?

“I told him, ‘the more you’re with a director, the better performance you can give. If you don’t give time to a director, then the director cant give better shots. I do guide him with whatever knowledge I have, he takes my advice. We are like friends at home. Even I take his advice. I comment on his acting a lot. I tell him when I don’t like something. My wife and Susanne are his biggest critics. Even when they see a trial from my film, they’ll just sit down, take a pencil and just fire me, so my hands literally get cold when I get back home. But, honestly I think Hrithik is one of the finest actors we have today. He has done a good job in every film. For an actor, the film has to help you. Actors can’t do anything on their own. He’s a puppet in the hands of the director. As an actor, he always performs well. He can’t do a good job in 1 film and a bad job in another. I liked him in Fiza, Mission Kashmir, Lakshya and K3g. I think as an actor he’s come here to stay because he’s a good actor and good actors never die. He can have a bad patch but he can fight back because of his talent. As a father I wish him all the best, all the success; I pray for him,” says Rakesh emotionally.

Does he see him as a superstar?

“I don’t see him as a superstar. I see him as a good actor and as my son. But yet, I even can’t deny that for the world he’s a superstar. Whenever he’s invited to some big function or event, I don’t accompany him. I feel petrified looking at the crowd. They literally push you. I take some other route; reach half an hour late or something, but I am sure Hrithik must’ve got used to it,” laughs Rakesh.

People are waiting for the next Father-Son project…

Rakesh interrupts, “Success gives you responsibility, but it also gives you more strength. If you use it in the right way you can come up with a good film. But I’m sure the audience wont be disappointed with out next film. We’ll definitely make a good film. Actually all my films are wholesome entertainers. It’s not only with Hrithik that I’m making good films; I was making good films before him also.”

The father-son combination has really created waves. And Rakesh is all pats and praises for his son. “Manipulations happen temporarily. At the end, it’s your honesty that pays you in every walk of life. Whatever you are from within your eyes show it all. ‘To become a good actor, you’ve to be a good human being’. This is written in bold in the Acting Institute of London. And I know that my son is a fantastic actor. He’s a very down to earth boy. He’ll just wear jeans and a t-shirt and I have to remind him that people are constantly watching him, he’s got to dress up, but that doesn’t bother him. Basically he’s not been carried away by success.”