Aditya Roy Kapur, 27, is passive and not pushy when it comes to his career. Things have always come to him on his own, be it a job as a VJ or a role in films. He loved cricket and football over studies. He plays the guitar, writes songs and hopes to make a career out of it. He may have started off as a supporting actor, but has made the cut on his own in 'Aashiqui 2'. Ahead of his upcoming film Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani,Aditya Roy Kapur talks to TOI about prankster Ranbir Kapoor, his grounded bhabhi Vidya Balan and what attracts him to his friendship with Shraddha Kapoor. Excerpts:What was it like to have two older brothers?
Let's talk about your family?
I was born and brought up in Mumbai. My dad is Punjabi and my mom Jewish and I have two elder brothers in the film industry ' Siddharth and Kunaal. I think the story of my parents is more interesting than mine. My dad was in the army and mom Salome Aaron (her name before marriage) was a ballroom dancer. She has been dancing since the age of five and would do the tango, cha cha cha, jive and samba. At that time, it was a big thing and she used to travel around and dance, with her family accompanying her. She was also a Miss India. My dad was posted in Kashmir and he met her at a bar, where she was dancing. He started flirting with her in front of her dad, who was accompanying her, saying 'Can I read your palm?' He was in the army and had many years to serve, but he got out of the army as he fell in love with her and they married and shifted to Mumbai. My dad is retired now, but at that time, he dabbled in different things on his own. My mom taught dance for 30 years and also choreographed for a few films.
I was a crazy psychotic child and failed in Class VI. I would get up at 3 in the morning to watch cartoons. By 7.30 am, I used to get a stomach ache which would go away by 10. That is why I failed. I was in the same school and it was extremely embarrassing, so I used to tell my junior batch that I was from another school and had just joined. At that time, Siddharth was the head boy and Kunaal, the prefect. I improved only to the extent of passing my exams, but was actually interested only in cricket. We stayed in Cuffe Parade, but I was not as well-off as the kids around me. That did have an effect. Luckily, the environment at home was so nice that we always felt we had everything we wanted. It is just that the difference between me and the others was stark. So in Class VIII, I would say silly things like 'I have a car' though I did not. Siddharth is 11 years older to me and Kunaal six years older. I would always run behind Kunaal's friends and say 'take me also'. He would be with his group of friends and I would be the small boy playing chor police and had a crush on one of his girl friends. Kunaal and Siddharth both did theatre and Siddharth is a good actor as well. Siddharth was ridiculously fat till Class VII, till he lost weight. For him, family is paramount. While I am messy at home he is extremely organised both in his home and head. Kunaal is multifaceted and can direct, do photography and is a stand-up comedian. While I am close to both of them, the age gap is a lot. I talk most to my mother and end up chatting a lot with her as that is a relationship where I don't feel I am talking to someone that I am answerable to.How did you get into films?
I went to St Xavier's in Class XI and failed and then joined St Andrew's College to avoid losing a year. Siddharth was, at that time, working with Star in Hong Kong and a friend of his called me to ask if I wanted to audition for VJing for Channel V. I was only 19 at that time and I remember I was with Lola Kutty on a show wearing this white t-shirt which read 'Don't judge me for it'. It was too funny and Lola would say to me, 'Now tell them take a break.' I worked there for fours years, when I got a call to audition for London Dreams
and got selected. They told me I would shoot with Salman Khan and Ajay Devgn and get to be in London for a month-and-a-half. I obviously took it. I had not been a Hindi movie buff and had not looked at this as some kind of a start in Bollywood
. But I fell in love with being an actor, and the ball set rolling. I have worked as a supporting actor in London Dreams, Action Replayy, Guzaarish
and now Yeh Jawaani Hain Deewani
(during the shooting of which he was offered Aashiqui 2
), but I thought it would be nice to see how I would make the cut on my own.What is Ranbir Kapoor like?
He is brilliant and is a lot of fun to be with, on set. He will find something or the other to do and is always playing 'I am four years senior to you'. I have given him a lot of leeway to trouble me. For instance, when I am walking, he will trip me. He will come and put something in my ear. He likes it that way and gets a kick out of doing mad things, so I let him do it. I know if I do something back to him, he will take it, but 10 minutes later he will get back at me.Ranbir has been teasing you about dating Shraddha Kapoor. Are you seeing each other?
I can understand why people think we are together, as we are really good friends and are really really close and go out for dinner and movies together. She is a nice person and is a good actress and is great fun to be around with. We met at a time in our lives, when we both were in love with this film and wanted to make the best out of it. Now seeing Aashiqui 2
do so well, we just laugh our heads off on how this has happened. She is focused and knows for sure that she wants to be an actress. This is her life and this is what she has always wanted and she is working towards it. I like the fact the she is easy-going, does not take herself too seriously and I can make fun of her. She is one of the people I would reach out to if I am in trouble.Do you seek help from your brother Siddharth?
I definitely seek his advice for everything, be it people that I may work with or events I may do. He is both, my friend and older brother. I speak to Kunaal as well, as both have interesting takes, but I end up calling Siddharth more as he is influential and knows more.Your bhabhi Vidya Balan is a big star on screen. How is she at home?
After they got married, I have met them only five times as they have been so busy. She is a wonderfully grounded person and you don't feel you are sitting in front of a big star in any way. It comes naturally to her and she is not put on and so the atmosphere is really relaxed. We are friends and she is interested in how my career is going and knows what I am going through as she has been through it all. She will always tell me trust yourself and go with your gut, as that's what she has always done. And, of course, I love the way she carries herself.