By Subhash K. Jha, Indo-Asian News Service
Mumbai, (IANS) His "Masti" might have pioneered the movement towards sex comedies, but his latest "Home Delivery" is progressive and doesn't rely on loudness or crassness to be effective, says Vivek Oberoi.
Declaring that "Home Delivery" isn't sold to the audience like bhelpuri, Vivek says that the film is funny and has an "emotional 'tadka' (seasoning) to it. And it leaves audiences with a pleasant aftertaste".
As Vivek sees it, films like "Home Delivery" have to click for more directors to come forward with meaningful cinema.
The actor, who tasted instant stardom with "Company", says he doesn't think why he was the blue-eyed boy two years ago, "why I was the next best thing after sliced bread just the other day".
"Ups and down are a part of every actor's repertoire," he adds philosophically in this interview with IANS.
Excerpts from the interview:
Q: Why is your new film called "Home Delivery"?
A: Well... on the surface Boman Irani plays a pizza delivery man. But "Home Delivery" also has a deeper meaning. It has a lovely second layer. This film isn't just a comedy for me. You won't fall off your seat watching it. It's a film suffused in beautiful moments. It's funny and has an emotional 'tadka' (seasoning) to it. It has that 'meetha-meetha ansoon' (emotional) moments to it. And it leaves audiences with a pleasant aftertaste.
It's progressive cinema. "Home Delivery" doesn't have to rely on being loud or crass to be effective. A grandfather and grandson can watch it together without squirming.
Q: Your "Masti" pioneered the movement towards sex comedies...
A: Yeah, to the writer Milap Jhaveri goes the credit for starting this wave of sex comedies. I had done a lot of comedy in theatre. Doing "Masti" was a personal challenge for me. I had to push those convictions as far as I could and be convincing in what I was doing. To my surprise, families and kids loved "Masti".
Q: You are caught between the two extremes represented by Indra Kumar in "Masti" and Sujoy Ghosh in "Home Delivery"?
A: Firstly, I don't think I'm caught. I'm very happy with the various challenges that life is throwing at me. I had a blast working with Indra Kumar during "Masti" and now "Pyare Mohan", which just got completed.
I love breaking the mould, doing crazy things. "Home Delivery" is quite a different experience. There's a stunning graph for my character. He changes in 48 hours before Diwali.
The character is a celebrity journalist. Like many of the ilk, he's full of himself. He calls himself Gyan Guru if you please! He believes he has a solution for every problem in the world. He has a beautiful relationship with his editor Juhi Chawla. He thinks the newspaper cannot do without him. And his ego gets a bigger boost when Karan Johar (Bollywood director) asks him to write a script...
The director Sujoy Ghosh has held himself back, checked the emotional pitch.
Q: Sujoy is a strange director.
A: He isn't strange, he's quirky. Sujoy has a certain 'adaa' (style) to his vision. When I read his script of "Home Delivery" I was struck with the many perspectives and layers which he doesn't push into your face.
There're no injections of culture and emotions. Sujoy just tells the story as he wants to. But it isn't massy. "Home Delivery" isn't sold to the audience like 'bhelpuri'.
Q: So doing "Pyare Mohan" and "Home Delivery" side by side must be a culture shock?
A: I enjoyed both immensely... Just like doing Ram Gopal Varma's "Company" and Shaad Ali's "Saathiya" simultaneously. It was a big high for me to do an action film and an out-and-out romantic film simultaneously.
Likewise, "Pyare Mohan" and "Home Delivery" gave me a chance to stretch myself in two different directions. I'm having fun. I had taken four months off to work for causes I believe in.
Q: There was a wave of indignation against you?
A: If a Mahatma Gandhi couldn't escape condemnation, who am I? A wave always has a short life... Even tsunami. You just have to hold your own. You have family and friends to provide you the strength.
I don't think about the wave of indignation, just as I don't think about why I was the blue-eyed boy two years ago... why I was the next best thing after sliced bread just the other day. Why me? Why not me? Now again, I might become the blue-eyed boy, the guy who rose from the ashes. The important thing is to grow as a human being.
Ups and downs are part of every actor's repertoire. Two years ago, Ajay Devgan had six hits in a row. Abhishek Bachchan has four hits in a row. I can't measure my life by a few Fridays. I want to enjoy all my 365 days. I'm doing it all.
I want to do good films, bad films, sensible films, senseless films, meaningful films, meaningless films... I want to do it all.
Q: What other assignments?
A: I've just done Sachin Bajaj's "Naqsha". And I really like the script of Vishal Bharadwaj's "Othello". I've to meet him one more time. I'm looking at a lot of scripts right now.
"Home Delivery" has to click for more directors to come forward with meaningful films. Sujoy Ghosh has such an amazing family life. His wife and children are so lovely. The warmth and comfort level that he shares with his family shows up in his film.