By Dibyojyoti Baksi
Mumbai, July 6 (IANS) Actor-filmmaker Anil Kapoor is happy to see that women are finally getting their due in male-dominated Bollywood. And one girl in particular is making him proud - younger daughter Rhea who has just wrapped up her maiden production venture "Aisha".
"I have always believed in different qualities between men and women; I have always found women superior to men. I am not saying it for the sake of it. If you see, my children have grown up so well, that's because of their mother and because of me," Anil, 49, told IANS in an interview.
Anil, who tied the knot in 1984, has two daughters Sonam and Rhea and also a son, Harsh.
"The way girls are coming up, taking charge, holding situations, calling the shots... just at the age of 23, Rhea made the whole film. I am very happy, not only for Sonam and Rhea, I feel happy for all girls," he said.
His elder daughter Sonam decided to grace the silver screen and made her debut with Sanjay Leela Bhansali's "Saawariya" in 2007. After that she was seen in "Delhi 6" and just released "I Hate Luv Storys".
Rhea, who worked as an assistant on the movie "Wake Up Sid", decided to remain behind the camera as a producer. Her "Aisha" is based on the British novel "Emma" by Jane Austen and stars Sonam and Abhay Deol in the lead roles.
Anil, who has been in showbiz for three decades, says: "What I like the most is to see how times have changed. Years ago, in the film industry and show business, there used to be only men. I used to feel bad about why girls were not treated equally. Now things have changed all over the world, specially in India."
Anil rarely ventures into production because he is more passionate about acting.
"I feel I am more an actor and I love acting. I do produce, if I like the script like 'Gandhi My Father'. Otherwise I am more passionate about acting and Rhea is more passionate about producing. In future also Rhea would be producing the film and I will be there to sign the checks, nothing else," said Anil.
He is approaching 50, but the actor has managed to maintain his youthful looks and enthusisam since his first hit, "Woh Saat Din". He went on to star in blockbusters like "Tezaab" (1988), "Ram Lakhan" (1989), "Beta" (1992), "1942: A Love Story" (1993), "Virasat" (1997), "Nayak: The Real Hero" (2001) and even the Oscar winning "Slumdog Millionaire" (2008).
Asked about the secret behind his enduring youthfulness, he said: "There are three four things. First, you should be mentally happy. When you have a good family, you are happy with them, you don't need to indulge in drinking and smoking.
"I do everything, but within limits. I also exercise five to six days a week and control my eating habits."
From a simpleton to a rowdy, from a mentally challenged man to a lover boy - the versatile actor has done various roles and worked in almost every genre, but he still thinks a lot of spheres are untouched.
"You might think that I have done many roles, but many roles are still left out."
After British director Danny Boyle's "Slumdog Millionaire", he is doing an American TV series "24" and looking forward to quite a few international projects.
"Internationally, I have just started my career. There are certain things I am looking at but has not pinpointed which one to take," said Anil.
(Dibyojyoti Baksi can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)