‘MY AMBITION IS TO GROW AS A HUMAN BEING’
Sonam Kapoor wants to tell relevant stories through cinema
She is clearly on a roll. Sonam Kapoor’s last two releases — Prem Ratan Dhan Payo (2015) and Neerja (2016) — impressed critics and audiences alike, and her performance in Pad Man is also getting rave reviews now. A “happy and proud” actor, Sonam maintains that she’s “glad to be associated with a film that dared to be different”. We caught up with her about Pad Man, her career and more.
When you choose your films, do you always aim to strike a balance between different genres?
Honestly, I don’t think about it a lot. I only want to do films with [right] people and tell relevant stories. Whether it is Pad Man, Veere Di Wedding, the Sanjay Dutt biopic, or Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga, I’m playing characters that resonate with me, and I hope they resonate with audiences, too, so that I can be proud of what I’m doing.
Everybody thinks that I took a gap after Neerja, but I was shooting for four films. For some strange reason, all of them are releasing this year.
Since your debut film, Saawariya (2007), has your process of choosing films changed much?
Nobody remains the same forever. For me, it’s also important to work with good people. I don’t want to be traumatised on a film set because, at the end of the day, it’s just my job and not the end of my life. I’m very ambitious about my craft and art but I’m also equally ambitious about my growth as a human being, and that ambition overrides my ambition to be a successful cinema artist.
Pad Man is doing well commercially and your performance is also getting rave reviews. Is it the best thing that an actor can ask for?
Rave reviews are a bonus, and I’m thankful for them. But the best thing an actor can ask for is a good role and being part of cinema that inspires him or her to be better at the job.
I love it when everything — from the narration, script, talented co-stars, and an exciting role coalesces into a film. In today’s times, content drives creative collaborations. I’m happy and proud to be associated with a film that dared to be different.
Although, I’m overwhelmed by the response to my performance, the credit goes to R Balki (director of Pad Man).
What’s the best compliment you have received for your performance?
The best compliments have come from my contemporaries and directors. A lot of them were kind enough to convey it through personal messages. And I’m super grateful.
Pad Man comes right after Neerja and Prem Ratan Dhan Payo. Are you excited about the variety of roles that have also got you lots of praise?
Of course! It’s a huge boost for me to know that a certain filmmaker believes in me or thinks that I can fit into his or her vision. I’m grateful for the variety that has been offered to me. In fact, I never took that for granted.
Many feel that you, over the years, have become effortless with your performance…
Thanks, but I don’t think I can call it effortless. Striking an equation with the camera didn’t come naturally to me. I worked on it and tried to polish it with each film.