Arjun Kapoor: I am very shy when it comes to women
'Ranveer and I bond over many things. We talk about cars, football -- he is an Arsenal fan I am a Chelsea fan and obviously we both have a fight on that.'
'I love him as a friend and I'm going to be there for him whenever he needs me.'
Arjun Kapoor talks about his BFF, their film together Gunday, and much more.
Arjun Kapoor is really excited about Valentine's Day.
His male bonding act with his Gunday co-star Ranveer Singh has become the talk of the town.
Arjun doesn’t deny that bromance is in the air: "Ranveer and I are changing the dynamics of Valentine’s Day completely. We might just get arrested for it.”
Be it Karan Johar’s chat show Koffee with Karan or award functions, the two actors cannot seem to get enough of each other.
In a candid interview with Sonil Dedhia, Arjun tells us he's not worried about comparisons with Ranveer, why he prefers Parineeti over Priyanka Chopra, and his equation with his father Boney Kapoor.
Ranveer mentioned in his interview that you share a common passion -- women.
I am very shy when it comes to women and in comparison with Ranveer, any guy would be shy.
He is very physically available for a hug or kiss all the time while I am not a very touchy-feely kind of guy.
I used to be too shy to smile at a woman, but Ranveer has changed that. Now, I am more approachable.
Our tastes are very different. Ranveer can describe what attracts him to a girl. I go by personality. I am intrigued by women I have conversations with. He's made me feel like I can be myself and approach a girl.
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Image: Arjun Kapoor
Photographs: Arjun Kapoor/Facebook
'Women don't mind Ranveer being upfront'
Ranveer said that he usually gives you a nudge when he sees a hot girl passing by…
(Laughs) As I said, he has made me more approachable so I go with the flow.
One thing I realised with Ranveer is that his energy is very positive and it comes from a very pure heart. Women don’t mind him being very upfront because he doesn’t have an agenda to impress them.
People initially thought it was an attention seeking antic, but he isn't actually like that.
You seem to be having a lot of fun promoting this film compared to other ones.
Look, I'm a fun person but you have to conduct yourself with the dignity your film deserves.
When Ishaqzaade released, I was going through hell. It didn’t matter what I said or did because I had lost my mother.
My next film Aurangzeb was an intense film. If I had done any masti, it would have made the film look frivolous.
Yahaan main thoda raita phela sakta hoon, kyunki Gunday ka sur aisa hai.
Image: Ranveer Singh and Arjun Kapoor
Photographs: Abhijit Mhamunkar
I am not really worried about the comparisons with Ranveer'
Ranveer and you have known each other for a long time. Are you ready for the comparisons that will be made once Gunday releases?
It’s bound to happen. I am not really worried about it.
The film is designed in such a way that you cannot speak about Bikram (Ranveer Singh's character) and not discuss Bala (Arjun Kapoor's character). They are two sides of the same coin.
That is why they fall for the same girl. You will see a difference and a similarity.
As long as the film does well, I'll be happy. I couldn't care less who's loved or hated more.
Will you still be just as good friends once the film releases this Friday?
I find it disappointing that people don’t give us a little more credit than that.
I love him as a friend and I'm going to be there for him whenever he needs me.
Apart from work, what are the things that you and Ranveer bond over?
We bond over many things. We talk about cars, football -- he is an Arsenal fan I am a Chelsea fan and obviously we both have a fight on that.
He calls me a spendthrift because I like spending money on clothes.
I am teaching him the finer things of life like purchasing expensive underwear. Thanks to me, he has finally started wearing D&G (Dolce and Gabbana).
We are inherently passionate about cinema and it comes from this deep-rooted love for the profession, and not only for acting.
Image: Arjun Kapoor and Ranveer Singh in Gunday
'It was good to challenge myself physically as an actor'
You have lost a lot of weight. Did you have to do that for Gunday where you have to appear shirtless?
Garmi lag rahi thi yaar! (It was hot)
See, the idea was to look like heroes who make an impact when they hit people. So we had to work on our bodies.
It's a huge deal for me not just that my body looks a certain way but that I have the confidence to go shirtless.
It was good to challenge myself physically as an actor. The other day Priyanka was watching the film and told me that she couldn’t believe that it was me in the film -- that same chubby boy who used to come to fetch people from the vanity van when the shot was ready (Arjun was an assistant director on the Priyanka Chopra film Salaam-E-Ishq).
Image: Arjun Kapoor in Gunday
'Priyanka is a huge star but she doesn't carry it on her shoulders'
You have worked with Parineeti Chopra and now you are working with Priyanka Chopra. Which cousin do you prefer as your co-star?
Arre, Parineeti toh sirf bahaana tha, mujhe Priyanka tak pahunchane mein (laughs).
On a more serious note, the Chopra surname has been lucky for me. There was Adi (Aditya Chopra), then Parineeti and now Priyanka.
Parineeti is closer to me as I made my debut opposite her. Priyanka is a huge star but she doesn’t carry it on her shoulders. She is always focused and dedicated and tries to improve herself every day.
You can't ask for twenty takes for a scene with her because Priyanka can blow it out of the park with a single take.
She had fun with us and I hope that energy and chemistry shines through.
That said, I'll be biased and choose Parineeti because you always remember your first (smiles).
Ishaqzaade, Aurangzeb and now Gunday are all action dramas. Won’t you get stereotyped as an action hero?
In my next film Two States, main chikna lag raha hoon. Daadi nikaal diya hai, chotte baal hai. Chashme pehen ke, haat main kitaab leke, mummy ka bachcha hoon (I have taken off my beard, cut my hair short, wear glasses, have a book in by hand -- I look like a real mummy’s boy)
If the audience likes it, I'd love to do more roles like that.
Also, I think I'm so new that I can't really be stereotyped yet, unless I make another three action films.
But I wouldn't have passed on a film like Gunday even if I had done a lot of action before.
After Two States, I have Finding Fanny Fernandez, which is a very different film where I have a softer role, that of a mechanic.
In Tevar, I play a boy who goes for a kabaddi tournament. The idea is to create freshness even if it is in the same genre.
Image: Arjun Kapoor, Priyanka Chopra and Ranveer Singh in Gunday
'I could have debuted with my father but that would have been the most cliched way'
You are working with your father Boney Kapoor in Tevar after having established yourself. Were you professional with your terms and conditions being laid down while working with him?
You can’t lay down terms and conditions in front of your parents.
The only thing I requested my father was to make his kind of film. I want to be his strength and not his problem. I didn't want him to design a film to fit me.
You could have easily worked with your father in your very first film. Were you proving a point by working with others first?
I could have debuted with him but that would have been the most cliched way of making a debut.
You take away from the film and yourself. Even a crackling film would have had that negative effect that a father is launching his son in a fully designed film to show his skills.
We might make a designed film now but you won’t even notice because you have seen me as an individual and accepted me.
There were reports of a rift between you and your father...
There was no rift. While I was growing up, he wasn't living with us. But the bond was still just as strong and it's only gotten better now that we are working together.
He never used to visit me on the sets and has never seen me shooting for a film, so how I behave on the sets has come as a revelation to my dad.
We just wrapped up the first schedule of Tevar and on the last day I finished giving my last shot and was walking towards my vanity when my father came up to me and said “Good shot.”
It was the best feeling ever to receive a compliment from him.
Image: Arjun Kapoor in Gunday
'My equation with Alia was blown out of proportion and made to see like romance'
You have been constantly linked with your Two States co-star Alia Bhatt. Does that bother you?
It's a small price to pay for the love and affection we get. It's natural that if two actors have done a film together, we are going to develop a friendly equation. That's blown out of proportion to seem like a romance.
When we attended the Filmfare pre-party together, we arrived at the same time and so obviously, I wasn't going to ignore her.
Suddenly, there were reports everywhere that it was our first public appearance together.
Image: Arjun Kapoor and Alia Bhatt
Photographs: Abhijit Mhamunkar