I am completely guided by my director’s vision – Kareena
Kareena Kapoor Khan’s latest movie, Ki and Ka, addresses an issue which is unconventional, even for a taboo in India – a working wife with a stay-at-home husband. The film is directed by R. Balki, who is known for challenging conventions in all his films.
The pretty actress who is very similar to her character – that of a married, ambitious working woman – talks about how Ki and Ka will set a precedent in Indian cinema.
What is that one thing that drove you towards the script?
It was R. Balki’s entire concept, which was very different. It does happen in India, but nobody ever addresses these issues. Everybody talks about it in hushed tones. R. Balki took the courage to make it and also make it slightly quirky and out of the box.
Do you think that you’ve been able to do complete justice to your character in the film?
Yes, of course, because I have given a lot to this role. I have followed my director’s version. Ultimately, filmmaking is a director’s medium. It is the vision of the director that comes out on the screen. I believe that I am a director’s actress, and am completely guided by my director’s vision. R. Balki is a wonderful director, just to come up with a concept which is so quirky and fun, and do it in such a spirited way. All the credit goes to him.
How was the experience of working with director R. Balki as compared to the other directors that you have worked with?
Balki himself is a very funny and quirky person. He doesn’t think like a regular filmmaker. He doesn’t understand glossy movies and makes his movies very real. Whenever we would want to wear clothes from Gucci or Prada, he would not let us; only Zara or Mango (Laughs). He would tell Manish (Malhotra, designer), “She plays a Delhi girl who works at an ad agency. She cannot be shopping at Prada. So, only Zara or Mango.” When you see the film, you will notice that Ki is wearing normal clothes. People who work at ad agencies wear clothes that are available and affordable. That’s what I felt proud of, that I am wearing high street wear which is also office-going. But it looks good and is affordable. Actresses can be normal and be in the character.
So is your character inspired by any real women?
No, because Balki was very clear about the character. The way he wanted it and the way he sees it. So I just followed him.
How do you connect with Ki on a personal level?
The fact that we are both married, independent and working is quite similar. But the fact that she experimented with this marriage, this guy who has no ambition and wants to be like his mother, is slightly different. Men always say that they want to be like their father. Nobody says that they want to be like their mother. So that is quite a new take.
What are your most memorable moments from Ki and Ka?
I think the way the whole movie has been shot and the character that I play. Not many women would have the courage to marry this guy who says that he doesn’t have any ambition and doesn’t want to work. That is the quirkiest part of Kia, my character.
Do you think that there will be a change in men’s attitude towards women post this movie?
I think the attitude of men is already very different now. There are many married women who get to work and have supportive spouses. Men respect the fact that their wives want to work, follow their dreams, and not stay at home.
Also, do you feel that Arjun Kapoor’s unconventional role in the film will give newcomers confidence to experiment with newer characters?
Yes of course! The fact that both of us have picked these roles should inspire both girls and boys.
What’s next after Ki and Ka? Any films in the pipeline?
Everybody’s been asking me this question (Laughs). I don’t know what I am doing and I think that is the most amazing thing. I am at this stage where I don’t want to do five movies. I would rather do one or two movies. I don’t know if something is wrong with me or not, because I haven’t liked anything lately. Every script that I read in the last six months was terrible.
Is there a message that you would like to give your audience for Ki and Ka?
Just the fact that it is a brave and bold film, especially in India. There are a lot of stay-at-home husbands even in this industry; people who are working in production, art direction and other areas. It hasn’t been addressed before. There is nothing to look down upon the fact that a woman wants to works, and the husband is giving her a helping hand.
Transcribed by Shikhar Goyal