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Interview Hindi

Dad can do plumbing, carpentry, everything, says Siddhant: Shakti Kapoor birthday special

As the noted villain and comic, Shakti Kapoor, turns a year older today (3 September), his reticent son Siddhant shares a few thoughts about his father.

Still from Mera Faisla

Mayur Lookhar

As Hindi cinema veers towards more realistic sagas, the formula films are drying up. The latter was cheered on and known for its goofy, light-hearted characters.

It was not the just heroes, but even the villains carried a charm of their own. Their deeds were bad, but villains of the 1980s and 1990s had a sense of humor too. That explained why some of them were also cast in comic roles.

Shakti Kapoor is one such talented actor who has been hated and loved in equal measures. He has been around in the Hindi film industry for decades now. Shakti began his career playing minor roles, and soon emerged as a popular villain (Main Khiladi Tu Anari, Aakhen). He was much appreciated for his comic roles (Andaz Apna Apna, Raja Babu) too.

Shakti and Siddhant Kapoor (Photo: Facebook/Siddhant Kapoor)

As the noted villain, comic turns a year older today (3 September), his reticent son Siddhant shares a few thoughts about his father in this brief but exclusive conversation.

It's Shaktiji's birthday today. Is he a man who would like a surprise birthday bash?

No, not really. He usually just likes to be chilled out on his birthday. There’s nothing out of the box, he’d rather have a quite celebration, dinner with family.

We all know how he is on the screen, but how is Shakti Kapoor as a father? 

He is very different to his on-screen image. He’s got a big heart, he is very focused, committed and always very funny and entertaining. He’d make people laugh with his jokes. He’s just a chalta phirta (walking) entertainment in the house.

Can you share some memorable anecdotes about your father? 

I used to often go with him for his shoots. Those were days when he was busy doing 3-4 shifts. I didn’t want to stay away from him for long, so I used to go with him.

When he was in the house, it was always buzzing, when he wasn’t, there used to be silence in the house. He is always very active when at home.

If there’s a leakage in the house and no plumber is available, then he fixes it. He can be the plumber, the carpenter. He can become anything. He is a perfectionist, one who likes things to be in order. He smokes but will always put the buds in the dustbin.

So as a child when you broke your toys, did he fix that too? 

No. When I broke my toys, he used to break my head (laughs). He used to always put up with my brattish behaviour.

As a child when you saw your father play villainous characters, how did you feel?

I always knew it was just a film. Everyone in school were scared of me, that if they did anything to me, then dad will come and shout at them. However, when he came, he always entertained everyone around. I never got affected by what he did on screen or (when he was) bashed up by the heroes.

Your father has been labeled as a fine villain, but perhaps his most memorable characters have often come from comic roles. Do you agree?

I think he has given his best in whatever he’s done till date, be it comedy, positive roles or playing a villain. Whatever he has done, it has been appreciated by the people.

If you were to leave the son in you aside, then which are your favourite Shakti Kapoor roles? 

Maha-Sangram (1990), Satte Pe Satta (1982), then there was Aatish (1994). I must have have watched these 30,000 times. As we all know, Satte Pe Satta was a comedy, but I really liked the intensity of his characters in Maha-Sangram (as Babu Kasai) and Aatish (as Sunny) where he played one of the most stylish characters.

Your father has had his share of controversies. How did that affect you?

Let’s avoid that.

No problem. We respect that. 

I believe you played the young Rangeela (Shakti Kapoor) in Judwaa (1997). What memories do you have of that? 

Yes, I surely have. It was just a day’s shoot. I was in the seventh standard then, must have been around 11-12 years old. I would never forget my first film. David (Dhawan) uncle was all praise for me. That was the day when I realized that I would become an actor.

So, when you went back home after that day, did you tell your parents that you want to go to the sets more often? 

Yes, I did tell them I want to shoot more. Dad though would just say ‘sab time ka khel hai, sab kuch hoga’ (Everything will happen in its own time).

I read that you were approached to reprise your dad’s role for Judwaa 2. 

I wasn’t offered but we had a chat about it, but the character was written differently. Besides, I didn’t have dates as I was shooting for Haseena Parkar then. I’d definitely like to work with David Dhawan soon.

Finally, who was pampered more — Shraddha or you? 

Me. The first child of the family is always pampered.