Finally the release week is here. What is the feeling Katrina?
Katrina: The word on the tip of my tongue is still “finally” because there were times when we thought it was the end and it’s going to release, but it never really did and now it’s finally here. The word flashing across my mind is “finally” and there is also a lot of happiness and excitement to see what the audience’s response is going to be. It’s like an exam, you are biting your fingernails until the results come and you have to wait it out.
Q. About the film, the trailer gives a snapshot of everything in it and you cannot compartmentalise it. Is there something you would like to say about this, Ranbir?
Ranbir: Yeah, I think so. You know when were working on the film, everyday was something new and something different. There was no reference for anything and finally, when I saw the film put together, I was quite amazed because Anurag Basu has made the film from scratch and has made something that I have never seen in Hollywood or in world cinema. I am not saying that it’s world class. It’s amazing. But there is definitely isn’t a genre like this which is great and scary because audience also want a little bit of relatability. But I think its core story, which is the father-son emotion, the family value emotion, is very strong. And it really touches you and that’s quite intact in the film. Having said that, I don’t know, if you ask me if I am excited, if I am nervous, if I am anxious, I have no idea. I mean, I have realised the meaning of the term “labour of love” now. This is what it means. When a woman goes in a labour for nine months, it’s beautiful. This has been a three-and-half year labour for Anurag Basu.
Q. When did you decide to turn into a producer? It’s been a long journey now and everyone knows the reasons for the delay, where you all have shot, etc. But at what point did you say that “I am going to back this film”?
Ranbir: It naturally happened. After Barfi, Dada and I were trying to collaborate on the Kishore Kumar biopic that didn’t happen for some reasons. So I had this idea of a detective story when Basu came back saying let’s make music here, let’s make an adventure film, a universal kids-friendly film. And then we both were on it and there was no producer with us. So we decided to produce this film. We called it Picture Shuru Productions, because if you notice in Barfi, it starts with the song “Picture Shuru”. So we were like, let’s name it in that sense. It was beneficial for both of us. I don’t know if it’s the career I want to pursue, as a producer, but Jagga Jaoos works and this genre is accepted, we would like to make more franchises of Jagga Jasoos. Either make a prequel or sequel to it.
Q. The film is a musical too and your films have a great way with music. You think songs are an essential part of how the story goes forward?
Katrina: Absolutely. Songs are an extremely integral part in the story and the screenplay of Jagga Jasoos, but having said that, it is very different from any other film. It’s different from the role that music has played in any of my other films. Because the music in Jagga takes the movie forward and you cannot get to know what’s going to happen next if you skip the song. The songs are in the screenplay of the film and that’s never happened in any of my films or any other Hindi films in a very long time. That is the number one exciting thing about the film.
Q. For you, Ranbir, how was it like, matching steps with Katrina Kaif?
Ranbir: I started working with Katrina with Ajab Prem Ki Gazab Kahani, that’s eight years back. I have also seen the evolution of dance from where she started and where she has ended at. Right now she was showing me her IIFA rehearsal video. It’s incredible. We have a little bit of competitive nature, like if she is doing something I will do a little extra thing to make her better. But it is amazing. And also the song we did with baby dance, “Ullu ka Pathaa”, it was like a poker face but the dance step was a little comedic, a little synchronised, it was very new. It wasn’t the quintessential Hindi item song. It was a lot of fun.
Q. Could we see both of you collaborating again in the future if there is a good story?
Katrina: I don’t think any of our films we did were planned. They were just really good scripts which came to both of us individually as actors. And I think if the story demands him or me in the same film, and they come and they approach you individually, if that happens, and it’s a great story, then why not!
Q. What are your thoughts on nepotism? How do you see it?
Ranbir: Well, I am an example of nepotism. I am in this industry primarily because it’s my family job. But the way I see it, because I am not seeing it from the outside, I am seeing it from the inside. My great grandfather really worked hard to give his children this platform, my grandfather did this for his children and my parents did it for me. When I have children and my daughter or son, if they want to be actors, I would like them to have the opportunity to succeed in life. But beyond that I can’t really help them. It’s up to their talent, up to their luck. It’s the opportunities that they recognise. But I am not in denial of nepotism, it happens everywhere. For example if Lionel Messi’s son is joining Barcelona football team, I would like to see how he is playing. There will be too much criticism. It happened to Sachin Tendulkar’s son, Sunil Gavaskar’s son. It happens mostly in business families because a business empire is taken over by the son.
Q. This film is about father-son relationship. How are your relations with your father?
Ranbir: It is very different in this film. But I feel that the father-son relationship from the 70s and 80s is going to look very different to kids born between 2000 and 2010. The generation gap happened there. There is more exposure, more connectivity. Back then, there was a little bit of disconnection, the men were out there working. My father was out doing six films in a year, so we missed out on that connection. I have a lot of love, a lot of respect. I fear him but we don’t have a friendly relationship. In Jagga Jasoos, the relationship between Jagga and Tutifuti is of two best friends, like two lovers and it’s really very heart warming to see that and that’s not the relationship have with my father.
Q. As the movie is about school children, any quick memories of school days?
Katrina: I was very good student. If I was given a book to study I would read it thoroughly. Until the time I was studying I was very studious and diligent.
Ranbir: I was crap in school. It’s not the right thing to say but very early on in my life somebody told me that you need to become an actor, you don’t need to study. And that stayed with me. So maybe I used that as an excuse, I kept telling people. I never got good marks, I also never failed but I was among the last five. I was always below average in everything, like in dramatics, in studies. But I was decent at football and that made me feel alive: that I exist in this school or among my friends because of football. But I miss my schooldays. When you are in school, you want to get out of school and now you are out… The entire family, your teachers, friends, the classroom, the good times, the bad times, the hardships, first heartbreak, your first date: everything happens in school. So I miss my school days.