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‘My sister paved the way for me’

When Kareena Kapoor says that acting is in her genes, the actress — who represents the fourth generation of her family — is absolutely right. The Kapoor family enjoys about
an 85-year long association with the arc light, greasepaint and the camera.

 It was Kareena’s great-grandfather, Prithviraj Kapoor, who laid down the foundation of acting in the family by entering show business in 1928. This was taken forward by his three sons — Raj Kapoor, Shammi Kapoor and Shashi Kapoor (whose wife Jennifer was the first female from the clan to act in movies).

Later, all three sons of Raj Kapoor — Randhir, Rishi and Rajeev — faced the camera. In the fourth generation, it was Randhir and actress Babita’s daughter Karisma who carried forward the legacy of her family. Then, Kareena followed in her sister’s footsteps. The actress may have started with a string of flops but quickly made a name for herself as a capable actress and a commercial success. She feels, however, that more credit ought to be given to her sister.

“Being a Kapoor, acting is genetic. My sister paved the way for me in the industry when she became the first Kapoor girl to take up acting,” says Kareena.

Reminiscing of filmdom as a child, Kareena adds that she used to accompany Karisma — who entered the industry in 1991 with Prem Qaidi — to the sets and has grown up with the industry. “As a child, I used to accompany Lolo (Karisma) to the sets of her films, so I’ve seen the industry grow and vice versa. I have nothing but the highest regards for the industry,” explains Kareena, who completes 13 years in the business and has been part of over 45 films, including hits like Ajnabee, Aitraaz, Jab We Met and ‘3 Idiots’.

Staying fit in a fun way!

Instead of sweating it out on a treadmill, Divya Dutta is shedding weight by following zumba, a dance-fitness programme that combines aerobics and dance. The 35-year-old, recently seen in director Sonam Nair’s teenage drama Gippi, is following the dance-exercise programme invented by Colombian dancer-choreographer Alberto ‘Beto’ Perez in the 1990s. “Hectic Zumba started now! On heavy duty workout mode! So proud of myself! Lazy me is motivated (sic),” Divya posts on Twitter.

Dream project in the making

Looking forward to his upcoming film, ‘Freedom’, director Vivek Agnihotri says the movie is like Dil Chahta Hai and Deewar.

‘Freedom’, a political thriller, is set in different periods from 1984 to 2000. “It is a drama, not a satire. It is about the journey of youth, the journey post liberalisation. How the journey of talented, intelligent, gifted, the real cream of the country changed post liberalisation,” says Vivek, of ‘Hate Story’ fame. “This film explores parent-son relationships as well as the chemistry among friends. It is like Dil Chahta Hai meeting Deewar,” he adds. The Aamir Khan-starrer Dil Chahta Hai (2001) was a coming-of-age film of three friends, while mega-star Amitabh Bachchan’s Deewar (1975) was a crime drama. Vivek says that the film is the culmination of a lot of incidents that happened in India and whatever he has experienced or seen personally. “The film is about the ambition of three boys and how the family and society make contributions in those ambitions. For seven to eight years, I was trying to make this film but nobody was willing to do it — I wanted people who would do justice to it,” he shares.

“Luckily, ‘Hate Story’ became successful and producers were willing to put money into this. In India, we surrender and compromise. We end up getting a star who is not fitting the character,” he says.

The film stars Salman Khan, who made his acting debut with Remo D’Souza’s ‘Any Body Can Dance’.

“I have been wanting to make this film for a long time. I think he is perfect for the film. He is a good actor and a mind-blowing dancer,” says Vivek.

Not a morning person

Director Sujoy Ghosh can prepare himself for any kind of turmoil — after all, he is part of the film industry — but he does have his limits. The film-maker admits that he simply can’t come to terms with getting up early on weekends. “With time, life toughens you up. You realise that you are capable of much more than you thought...but not waking up early on a Sunday,” he tweets.

Sujoy shot to fame with the Vidya Balan-starrer Kahaani, a surprising success at the box office. Currently, he is busy planning a sequel to the film.

Working on his next film

Director Dibakar Banerjee has rubbished rumours about making a sequel to ‘Shanghai’.

Dibakar, who is currently busy with another one of his projects, says he has no plans to do so for a long time.

“Right now, I am just writing for my next film.

I haven’t announced the sequel so far and the plan is not to do so for a long time,” he says.

‘Shanghai’ featured actors Emraan Hashmi, Kalki Koechlin and Abhay Deol in the lead roles and won a positive response from the critics. The film focussed on the corruption in the
political system and did fairly well at the box-office. Dibakar’s latest release was ‘Bombay Talkies’, an ode to 100 years of Indian cinema.

The film was a bundle of four stories, out of which one was directed by Dibakar and the remaining three by Karan Johar, Zoya Akhtar and Anurag Kashyap, respectively.