Sonam Kapoor on how she had to dumb herself down but still remains her PR's worst nightmare You
say when you initially began talking about the authors and books you
read, they were so high-brow that people thought you were being
pseudo-intellectual. How have you resolved that and metamorphosed into
the style diva - by dumbing down the communication?
dumb down, but simplify it, you know what I mean? And anyways people
stop asking you those questions very quickly. They're more interested in
knowing 'have you signed this film? / why haven't you signed this film?
/ what is your relationship status? / have you had a catfight with X? /
why haven't you had a catfight? / so what exactly is your relationship?
/ you seem too friendly with X and Y' - by now I know, by rote, the
questions that certain journalists are going to ask me. That is their
job, because that makes for a good copy. I guess people want to read all
this. If they want to read more intellectual stuff, they can always
read interviews of social workers, politicians, intellectuals,
authors... They don't want to - actually I don't know if they don't want
to, but perhaps they don't expect to hear anything literary or
intellectual from an 'actress' - let's just say that! (laughs) You're reconciled to meeting the benchmarks of what an actress is supposed to be?
Yes, I have actually. I've learnt to be a little more diplomatic. I've
learnt that sometimes my humour gets lost in translation. People don't
understand that I'm just being funny, not trying to hurt anybody. People
take things too personally - I don't. If someone says something about
me, I let it go. But unfortunately everyone isn't like that. So I'm
trying to be more diplomatic - but people always want a headline from
me! Doesn't your current status as the uncrowned style
diva of India disqualify you from having any serious opinion on a
Yes, it does (sighs). So when I do say
anything, it becomes that she's shooting her mouth off. I'm a socially
concerned citizen of India. I have strong views on issues of social and
political relevance. But it's very difficult to voice it in an
intelligent manner without it sounding contrived. Because people think
you're saying or doing all this as a PR exercise, not from your heart. Her job is to wear natty outfits and she obviously doesn't understand anything beyond that, etc?
Yeah, yeah, yeah... all the time. I think young people have to take the
responsibility for how things are in our country. But what happens is
that when I go out to vote, I'm asked why I wore my red sunglasses!
Recently somebody asked me about nightclubs and rules and I said, we
need to be more proactive in influencing the political process. The laws
are all antiquated. Why complain about those who implement them? So you're not part of the slam-Dhoble campaign in Mumbai?
No. He's just implementing what the law says. It's the law that needs
to be changed, na. He's not doing anything wrong, but the law itself is
wrong, it's such an old thing. He says, this is the law, and I'm
following the law to the T, and for that you can't turn around and say
you're wrong. I don't know the man, I don't know his intentions, good or
bad. My point is, rebel against the law, why rebel against the person
who's implementing it? You've been rather open in
public forums about your fitness and weight loss issues - some would say
exceptionally so. What all you said from a dais in Delhi while
promoting Kalli Purie's book ("I refuse to wear a bikini. I have a saggy
bum, I have cellulite") was talked about for quite a while.
(Laughs) I got a lot of advice after I said all that. A lot of PR
people called me and said, you shouldn't have said that, there has to be
a mystery to an actress, there has to be this, there has to be that... I
said, I feel I have a responsibility to young girls out there. Because a
lot of them are going through anorexia, or are bulimic, or have other
health issues because they are trying to emulate a certain body type.
Nobody's looking at it as a health issue. I didn't try to become thin, I
tried to become healthy, because I had these issues, is what I was
saying. I didn't think it was right of me to say, I was born this way.
I'm 5'9'' and 36-24-36 and that's how I just am. No. It came with a lot
of hard work. I did it because I wanted to be healthy, and because I
wanted to wear certain clothes. But I did it the right way. I did a
proper nutritional and exercise plan. A lot of girls come across and
say, we eat everything and we're still like that, size zero, and I want
to say, I know you're lying, bitch! You can't eat everything and be that
way. How often do you have advisors or your PR system telling you, "you shouldn't have said this"?
Lots of times - I think every two days I get a call saying that! The top 5 episodes in that list?
One, you shouldn't have given that Delhi weight speech, interview,
whatever. Two, you shouldn't have said this about a certain activist.
Three, you shouldn't have said this about a certain journalist. I could
go on and on, but let's keep it to the top 3 (laughs)! Questions that irk you?
I don't want to be asked what I think about other actresses, and how I
rate their body parts. I don't want to talk about who I had a catfight
with or who I am friends with. I don't want to generally wish Happy
Rakhi and Happy Birthday and Happy Whatever Day. Those kinds of
things... 'Are you just friends with so and so...' it's become so
stereotyped, you know. 'How come this film of yours didn't do well?' Arrey,
I understood that, I wouldn't have done the film in the first place,
would I? (laughs) And then 'don't you think you're becoming known
primarily as a fashionista and not as an actress'? And I have a full
rehearsed answer, I've answered that so many times! I think they ask
this to provoke me. How easy is it to provoke you?
Very easy! I'm a hot blooded young girl, yaar
, it's easy to provoke me. But I take it on the chin. How often do you get parental reprimands for being provoked?
My dad thinks it's very funny. My mom also doesn't really say anything.
Because I don't think I've really ever been irresponsible. I don't
regret anything that I've done. I started working when I was 19. My
parents often say, we're scared of reading the papers, ab pata nahi tumne kya bol diya,
never anything more. I'm a very good child, that way. I still stay with
my parents, and I live by the rules of the house. I don't even spend my
father's money; I spend my own, though I do live in his house. I've
never embarrassed them. I don't have a bad reputation in the industry.
I'm always on time. I work very hard. I like to party but I'm never
irresponsible about it, I've never broken any law. The only thing they
tell me to keep in check is my temper. Hopefully I'll rein that in. How much has the hot-headedness dissipated in the five years you've spent in the industry?
I have mellowed. I've become very patient. But basically, I'm a very
passionate person. I don't like to brown nose too much, I'm not a
suck-up at all. It's difficult for me to really temper my personality,
but I am trying to be a little more sensible about it. If I really lose
my temper, I go to my room and scream and shout, but I try not to lose
it on people any more. I've never said something mean just like that.
I've only said things in retaliation. If somebody says, you are like
this, I can also turn around and say, if we're talking like this, well, I
think you're like that, too. Maybe it's childish. But why should I let
someone say things about me, put up an act and say, oh, let it be, she's
such a nice person - she's not! I can't be fake about it. This whole 'fashion icon' tag - though it's often used in a disparaging tone -
No, no, I love it! I love being called a fashion icon! - does it give you an ego kick?
No, it doesn't. Honestly, when I started off, I was wearing my old, vintage clothes. My father used to say, purane phate kapde kya pehenti rehti hai.
would say, why is she wearing these 1950s, 1970s style clothes, who are
these designers, we can't even pronounce these French designers' names,
we haven't heard of these Indian designers either. Why's she wearing
trousers? Why's she wearing high-waisted pants? Why's her hair done this
way? Why isn't she wearing lenses? Eventually, girls started liking it,
because I wasn't dressing aspirational - I was dressing like a young
girl. Then everybody started hiring stylists! I don't think it's an ego
boost, it's an extension of my personality.http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/entertainment/bollywood/news-interviews/They-all-want-a-headline-from-me-Sonam-Kapoor/articleshow/15374966.cms