'Krrish is not really a superhero film'
Interview: Archana Masih
Till Krrish came along, Hrithik Roshan's favourite superhero was Superman.
Sitting in his suburban Mumbai home, the actor makes it a point to mention that his forthcoming film is not really a superhero film; instead it creates the space for the birth of a superhero.
In what has been the most physically challenging role in his six-year career, Hrithik, who would like to be thought of as an honest actor rather than a superstar, spoke about his ambitious film to Assistant Managing Editor Archana Masih in an exclusive interview to rediff.com, which we will publish over the next four days.
If anyone else rather than Rakesh Roshan had come to you with the script of Krrish would you have accepted it?
I can only say that films like Koi... Mil Gaya, Krrish are characters which can only be given life by the heart of the actor. If you have an actor who imitates and projects the impression of the director then it goes completely wrong.
I would really have to have a lot of faith in the director and know for a fact that he has a lot of faith in me to leave things to me to have to say yes to a film like this.
With dad I know I have all those things. I know the trust I have in him and the implicit trust he has in me.
It is actually more the faith he has in me that gives me the confidence to do the film with him because I know he will allow me to give birth to this character from my heart and soul and not try to mould it according to what his perceptions are. He will just give me the outer boundary and let me do things within that.
If I know the director has enough faith in me and I have enough faith in him it wouldn't be a problem to accept a film.
What is special about Krrish? How is he different from your character Rohit in Koi... Mil Gaya?
Krishna is his actual name and though he is blessed with wonderful powers, he is unaware of how special they make him. He is a very unassuming, endearing, vulnerable character. He's strong, has these abnormally fantastic powers that come to use only for righteous reasons.
Strength is not one that makes you feel stronger than others around you. True strength is actually infectious. It makes others around you feel strong. That's the concept of strength that I believe in and that's the strength that Krrish has and stands for.
In a lot of ways he is like Rohit in Koi... Mil Gaya but in a lot of ways they are at two ends of the spectrum. Both are abnormal -- Rohit is abnormal because he rates really low on the IQ bar, he is mentally challenged and special. Krishna is abnormal because he is beyond the normal, he is high in all regards -- mentally and physically. They both possess a very simple heart, are unassuming and fun loving. There are familiarities and huge differences.
You lost 7 kilos for Koi... Mil Gaya, what lengths did you go to preparing for your role in Krrish?
The opposite, of course. I gained muscle weight because he had to look strong, muscular and have the physicality of a superhero. Krishna had to look close to the epitome of good looks and strength.
I trained in Hong Kong for two months under the supervision of Tony Ching, who is the action director of Krrish. He has done films like Hero, House of Flying Daggers, Shaolin Soccer. That was an exhaustive phase of my life and I am very happy that I got to develop all those skills that were lying dormant within me.
I enjoyed the physical training which required wire training, Wu Shu which is a martial arts form involving sword fighting and stick fighting. Physically it's been the most demanding character ever. It has been worth it, I am very happy I went through all hours of sweat and blood.
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Photograph: Mahender Soni