By Satish Sundaresan, Bollywood Hungama News Network
Soha Ali Khan is someone whose mere smile electrifies the entire silver screen. Even though she has been around in the tinsel town for sometime now, she making her way to the place where she rightly belongs- the Top! Soha will now be seen in the comedy Dhoondte Reh Jaoge in which she is paired opposite Kunal Khemu. The film also stars Sonu Sood, Paresh Rawal, Johnny Lever and Asrani.
Bollywood Hungama caught up with the young actress for an exclusive interview where she spoke about doing "quality" films, the challenge of doing comedy and her love for journalism.
To start with, these days, the silver screen is seeing very less of the golden actress called Soha Ali Khan. Is that a conscious decision?
Hey! That's so untrue. I had two releases in the last year and have four lined up for this year. The idea is not to do too many films. I would prefer doing quality films over the quantity ones! You don't get the right kind of script pretty often. You don't get the right kind of script that convinces you totally. I would much rather watch a film or maybe hang out with my friends, instead of doing a film in which I am not 100% involved in.
How are you feeling now? Nervous or excited with DRJ's release being just around the corner?
For any actor, it's pretty natural to be both excited and nervous, so am I! I try not to think about it. There's no point worrying too much. You don't want to put your heart in the line as you will only land up being dejected, if the audiences do not reject the film. For any film that I do, I give my 100% and after that, I do not think about the film. But I will want to know what the audiences think of the film!
What's your role in the film?
I am playing someone very unlikely in the film. And I don't think that I have ever played a character is called Neha Chattopadhyay, someone who is so far removed from my personality. My character is that of someone who is into street-theater and who stays in a chawl with her mama. Every time she gets nervous, she breaks into Bengali as she cannot speak Hindi that fluently.
How much of your role in the film do you identify with?
The dream that I share with her is that of becoming a Hindi film heroine. But the kind of film that they go on to make is something that I have never been a part of.
What's the film all about and what's your role in the film?
The film is more of a spoof, whereby we are spoofing from all the films from Sholay to Lagaan. With due respect to everyone, you can see me playing Basanti of Sholay, Simran of DDLJ, Ameesha of Gadar to name a few!
A very impromptu question. While 'playing' the roles all the leading heroines in one film, did you, at any point feel a particular role should have been offered to you?
Actually speaking, these roles are absolute landmark roles and have been such brilliantly played by the respective actors that I just cannot imagine the role of Simran being played by anyone but Kajol, Basanti by Hemaji, so on and so forth!
Soha Ali Khan Maybe when we interview any of the Gen-Next actress a few years down, your fans must be hoping that they will say that DRJ was a landmark film and that Soha's role was something that cannot be imagined being played by someone else! What say?
Thank you sooooo much for the compliment!
Your last film Dil Kabaddi was a comedy whereby you shared the screen space with Payal Rohatagi and in Dhoondte Reh Jaoge, its Deepal Shaw. Does that mean that you are open for multi-heroine roles?
In Dil Kabaddi, it was an ensemble cast, were various characters were etched out for those roles. I like mine amongst all of them. As far as Dhoondte Reh Jaoge, it has a number of characters. I was initially a bit apprehensive about doing this role. But it was a kind of film which I felt that I might land up regretting of not having done it. The good thing about this film is that though they have multiple characters, I am the only girl. While all the prime characters like Pareshji, Kunal Khemu, and Sonu Sood have well-etched roles, I am the only girl amongst the entire lot.
There must have been lots of memorable moments during the shoot of the film? Pease share some with us.
Since I haven't done any comedy before, this film had its memorable moments in terms of each and every frame.
Furthering what you just said, since you have worked on both the genres (comedy and serious roles), which of the two do you find tougher?
You get a lot of dialogues when you are doing a comedy. It also requires a certain amount of comic timing. For me, it's more challenging than doing serious roles. Because, when you are doing serious roles, you tend to get lots of help in terms of lighting, music etc...
What were the locations wherein the film was shot?
The chawl that we shot in Worli is a natural chawl in itself. There are lots of Mumbai places whereby we have shot the film. All in all, it's all a Mumbai-centric film! We have shot a few songs in Malaysia.
How was it working with Kunal Khemu as your co-star?
He is a seasoned actor. He, alongwith Paresh Rawal, has done theatre before. I really don't know if they have worked together before this film. Both of them form the highlight of the film. The film will work because of Kunal and Paresh. They, according to me are the lead pair of the film!
Your last film was Dil Kabaddi, a comedy, which sank at the BO. What according to you are the factors that you feel will make DRJ (which again is a comedy) work?
I think that the timing of Dil Kabaddi went against it. It got release just one week after the 26/11 trauma. Whereas, the best part of DRJ is that there's no other comedy that's releasing at the same time. Even the trailers are getting a huge positive and encouraging response!
At one point, you wanted to be a journalist. So, what's it about the journo's job that you like the most?
I feel that my skills lie in my research. I enjoy reading the papers. I think that journalism is a great profession.
What will form your next set of films?
There's 99 which is an action comedy, followed by Tera Kya Hoga Johnny and Kunal Deshmukh's Tum Mile with Emraan Hashmi.
Lastly, can you give us three reasons for the cine goers to watch DRJ?
There's the storyline, great performances and superb comedy! One needs to just go and watch this film for sure.