Pakistani hearthrob Fawad Khan has graced the cover of Hello! Magazine with Bollywood actors Kareena Kapoor, Sonam Kapoor, Abhishek Bachchan, and Aruj Kapoor. He is featured on the center of cover. His popularity had soared after his debut in film Khoobsurat with Sonam Kapoor.
Wednesday, December 3, 2014
Saturday, September 20, 2014
How has your trip to India for the promotion of Khoobsurat been?
I’m exhausted. I want to sleep. I didn’t know promotion was such a big thing here (Laughs). It’s funny that the number of days given to a film’s promotion is more than the days we shoot the film (Laughs). I’m the kind of guy who loves to be in front of the camera, give his shot and go home. It’s difficult for a private person like me.
Is Khoobsurat the first film offered to you in India?
No. After I did Khuda Ke Liye, a number of films were offered to me. I was supposed to fly down but due to the 26/11 (2008) Mumbai attacks I couldn’t. Some films were offered recently also but things didn’t work out.
How was the experience of shooting for a Hindi film?
It was a blast. I had great company. They all took great care of me. We played cards. They even had a Playstation on the set. It was fun and work in equal measure. I also took a historical tour during the two months we spent in Bikaner and Jaipur.
Were you intimidated considering it was your first Hindi film with stars?
I was intimidated from the moment I stepped in. It wasn’t because of the big stars; it was because I was out of my comfort zone. But it’s necessary to get out of your comfort zone. It’s educational. It strengthens you. It makes you capable of addressing situations with a worldview.
What is that one fond memory you will cherish of your stay here?
The film’s crew celebrated my birthday on the set. I had tears in my eyes. On my birthday, the whole crew gathered outside and there was cake for me. Also a laptop was kept open next to the cake. They played a video of my wife Sadaf and my child wishing me happy birthday. They had co-ordinated with them and recorded the message. People who knew me for just 20 days went out of their way to do these things…I was touched.
Is it difficult to stay away from the family?
It does become difficult. But when I get desperate and miss them a lot, I ask them to fly down. I don’t like them visiting me often because it becomes a distraction. But when their absence becomes a distraction, I call them.
If you start getting offers, would you move to India?
I’d love to do Hindi films but I don’t think it will be possible for me to move here. I’ve never moved to Karachi also even though all my film and television work happens there. Home for me is Lahore. I have grown up there. My family is there. I have been there since 21 years of my life. I’m used to that environment and vibe.
Tell us about your life in Pakistan.
I come from a middle-class family. I had humble beginnings. I even did a 9 to 5 job once. I got into television to escape college. At the age of 17, money wasn’t the motivating factor. It was the chance of bunking college. It was a mad bet for me. Also I believed since it was TV, no one would watch it.
But you became extremely popular because of television…
Yes, that’s the irony. I did a show called Humsafar and it became a worldwide success. I grew conscious of how I spoke, how I dressed because people were now watching me. Earlier, if we were shooting on location, I’d ask the guys to wake me up 10 minutes before the shot. I’d quickly splash my face with water and come out. I was lazy back then. Now I’m more alert. People are watching and they are watching me carefully. Television became the practice ground for me. I polished my skills there before getting into films.
Would you like to do television in India?
Right now, I want to concentrate on films. I want to exhaust this option. Few years later, I can return to television. I like how television works in the West. It’s a big industry. Television actors get paid as much as movie stars. Why can’t we have such great content? I’m not saying that we should copy but we should go beyond.
You were also into music, right?
I was. But I left music three years ago. We started a band called Entity Paradigm in 2000. It was an alternative rock band and lasted for eight years. We launched an album and did about 150-200 shows. Then we had a fallout. After a few years we got together but it didn’t work out. In a funny way, a band is like a marriage. You marry someone, then you get divorced and then you get married to them again! To make it work, the second time round, you have to have all the right things in place. But everyone had moved on. The discipline was missing.
Okay, they treat you like a superstar in Pakistan na?
They do? I don’t know… Maybe!
You don’t seem to carry the weight of stardom around…
I don’t like to. It’s bragging when you say how many fans you have or how much of a superstar you are. I don’t make such claims. I lead a normal life. I like to operate like any other person. It was difficult in the beginning but now it’s fine. (Laughs) Ab toh main ghar ki murgi daal barabar hoon. I like the fact that the person sitting next to me doesn’t know me.
What according to you is the flip side about being a star?
There’s just too much attention. I hate the attitude of people who believe you are a circus animal and they can take your pictures from any angle they want. Then there are people who float stuff about your personal life. But I guess, you have to get used to it
Talking about attention, your female fan following is crazy…
It’s flattering and humbling at the same time. I’ll be an idiot to say that I don’t like it but I don’t know how to react to it.
How does your wife react to women fawning over you?
She’s possessive and I like that. Initially, it did take a toll on my personal life. It’s like in any other marriage when a woman gets too close to the husband at a party, the wife will react. My wife would also react to it though in a subdued manner. Now over the years, she has taken it in her stride. And the more it has grown, the more even tempered she’s become. Now, she’s proud of the fact that her husband is wanted by so many people.
And you say that you don’t feel like a star…
That feeling hasn’t sunk in yet. But let me tell you, the life of a rockstar is much more interesting than that of a movie star. It starts from the green room to the stage and back. The high you get out of performing live is something else. There’s less worry and politics in music. You do what you want to do. It’s an amazing life. An actor’s life is boring.
Having worked in both, Hindi and Pakistani films, what are the differences you’ve noticed between the two industries?
It would be difficult to comment on that because there’s a second wave of cinema in Pakistan, which I haven’t been a part of it. The last film I did was Khuda Ke Liye in 2007 and that somewhere earmarked the revival of cinema. Here, a movie releases every Friday. There the process of filmmaking and releasing it is slower. Here there’s a system in place. Plus, the investment involved is the biggest difference between the two industries.
There have been protests by political parties against Pakistani artistes coming to India. What’s your take?
It’s not just about political groups but some people in general don’t like it. So the lesson people need to learn is that it’s such an enormous industry and there will be something for everyone. But if it’s more because of the spirit of nationalism, then it’s their choice. I’m not in their place so I can’t understand their sentiments. As a member of the Pakistani film industry, I’d love Indian film stars to work in Pakistani films. I’m sure the reaction would be why should we, considering it’s such a small industry. But it’s growing day by day. And it will attain a respectable size soon. Similarly, my coming to work here is more of an attempt to mend broken ties. We need to stop thinking within boundaries now. It’s high time. I’m a global citizen and not of just one country. I respect the laws of my country and those of other countries as well. So if it becomes a national policy that we won’t be allowed to work here, I’d respect that… baat hi khatam ho jaati hai.
Do you feel disturbed about it?
It’s sad. But how can you change someone’s mind about it? That’s not possible. You can only motivate and inform them. They are entitled to their choice. I respect it.
What reactions are you getting from Pakistan to the trailer of Khoobsurat?
They have been positive and supportive about it. They are eagerly waiting for it to release.
Thursday, August 7, 2014
Check out some of the photo stills from movie Khoobsurat with Fawad Khan & Sonam Kapoor
|Fawad Khan & Sonam Kapoor|