|What did Sonam think it took to be an actress? In her case, was it a natural inclination or did she have to work at it? She’s lickety-split quick with the answer because she knows it well. “It takes you to be besharam to be an actress in the sense of losing all inhibitions. You just cannot be inhibited.” And had she achieved it?
“I’m not a basically inhibited person. I do not believe in creating a facade for myself. Ranbir always tells me that I see things in black and white always. But that’s the way I am.” Could she accommodate grey in another person? She doesn’t like it but she has to. “Yes,” she answers in a small voice, “I’ve learnt to do that because everybody else is like that, shades of grey.”
If not Sanjay, which other director might Sonam have chosen to or wanted to debut with? She stubbornly shakes her head, “Nobody else. I would not have become an actor if it weren’t for Sanjay Bhansali. My mom put it very nicely. She said, ‘If the best marriage proposal comes for you, even if I don’t want you to get married, how can I say no?”
My mom didn’t want me to act but how could she say no when the offer came from the best director in the country? I don’t think I’d have been an actor if somebody else had come and offered me a debut film. I would not even have thought about it. Seriously.”
Had Anil Kapoor weaned her into the repercussions of and the mental coping with bouquets and brickbats? “Yes if I can criticize and have my own judgments, everybody is entitled to theirs. And I’ve come into it knowing that the reason I’m working is to put my work out there for judgement. Yes, it is hurtful to hear something negative about my work or me. But at the same time, I have to look at it as part and parcel of the profession. I have the maturity to take something negative that somebody has said, work on it, ponder over it and get beyond it.”
Had Sonam ever asked her dad about acting? “I ask him all the time during this film, all the time. And he’s taught me ‘to always be on time, say yes when the director’s working and let him direct you. To give your opinions only when they’re needed, never over the director’s vision, but at the same time, to never say something more than you should as an actor.’ My father always told me, ‘Become a bad habit with your directors so that they can’t do without you in their films. They have to have you.
What was Sonam’s perception of the industry and its people? “I think the film industry is the same as any other industry. The only difference is that there is more exposure to the media in this profession, so people talk about it. Like in any other job, here too, you have to work hard and need to be good at your job. It’s wrong to say the industry is dirty. It’s beautiful because its creative and it’s different. I love the industry and I feel very secure here because my dad’s a part of it. I’m my father’s daughter and very proud to be his daughter. If anybody says she’s got it easy because she’s Anil’s daughter, yes I have and it is easy because I’m Anil Kapoor’s daughter, and I’m not apologetic about it. People will talk.”
So, had she made many friends in the industry? There were bound to be contemporaries and rivals since everyone was pitching for the same work. Again, her voice becomes soft, “No, only Ranbir and Rani.” Sallu, we query, since she liked him so much. “Salman is my dad’s friend. I call him Salman only, he’ll kill me if I call him uncle.”
That’s when it struck all over again how ridiculously young this lovely girl was. She continues, not regretfully, but in a tone that said she’d like it to be otherwise, and that it would happen some day, “See I don’t have friends from the industry because my mum never took me there, and Ranbir is my friend because we’re family friends. I don’t know how it will be now that I’m getting into it professionally. I haven’t met anybody yet. Kareena’s been really sweet to me and always praises me whenever she meets me. I think she’s really sweet. I met Priyanka Chopra and she was very nice to me too. I don’t know who I might be friends with in the industry, I really don’t know.”
The latest buzz doing the rounds is that Sonam and Ranbir may be more than just reel life lovers. It is believed that the couple is dating each other seriously; post their debut in Saawariya. Apparently the two have continued dating each other even after the film's release. But it is believed that both sets of parents have asked them to be discreet about their relationship as they are afraid that it may adversely affect their careers.
It’s been a while since one has felt the infusion of such young, and innocent new blood in the industry. The advent of Sonam Kapoor and her debutant co-star Ranbir Kapoor leaves one with the feeling of elation. Theirs is a bright and promising future, exciting in its possibilities.