Snappy answers, whippy views. The young Alia Bhatt comes with a sharp serrated edge
“My emotions change every 10 minutes.” In that one statement, actor Alia Bhatt reveals much about herself. The self-assured 20-year-old daughter of filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt and actor Sony Razdan who is now two films old in Bollywood minces no words, talking about how people perceive her, and what her recent film, the Imtiaz Ali-directed Highway has done for her.
Highway, a road movie where she finds “freedom in bondage” after being kidnapped, had her travelling in trucks and sitting by the roadside, and even sing her first track for A.R. Rahman.
“I saw a Rajasthan I wouldn’t have seen otherwise. We took the non-tourist road and the isolated areas of Rajasthan are beautiful,” she says, at a promotional event in Bangalore.
She’s back from her red carpet experience at the 64 Berlin International Film Festival where Highway premiered before its release on February 21. “It was freezing… and I’m not allowed to murder my outfit by wearing a jacket…” noted the young fashionista. Excerpts from an interview:
Your age in this industry… has it been an advantage or disadvantage?
Till now? It’s okay… some people think I’m a bimbette and I don’t know anything. Which is fine. But some people think it’s an advantage, which is also fine… I try not to think about it too much. Because I am this age and I can’t do anything about it. I can’t fast forward and become older. I’m trying to enjoy the years that I have.
What do you think a film like Highway will do to your career?
My father says it will change my career but I don’t know. I feel it’s done a lot for me personally. So whether it’s gonna change or not…I don’t know. But as an actor I’ve learnt a lot. And I got the opportunity to work with a director like Imtiaz Ali for my second film, which is a big deal.
What role do your parents play in your film career? Do they help in decision making?
No decision making. I probably will discuss a script with them. But there’s no decision that they take. I take all decisions. I talk to my older sister Shaheen. She understands movies pretty well…so she’s probably a person I would discuss things with. Not my dad…you seem disappointed that I don’t discuss my films with my dad. Many people are like “you don’t talk to your father?!!” I talk to him about other things. When I’m exhausted I talk to him, or rather he talks. Because he’s really good at talking. He really understands emotions without having to speak about it .That’s when he gives me advise.
Many children of actors and filmmakers are dominating the Hindi film industry right now. Does it create more pressure? Everybody is watching everybody…
It does. But it’s good I feel. Because pressure makes you work. Not pressure in a suffocating sort of way, but there has to be some challenge. It can’t be a cakewalk all the time. The good thing is, everybody is focussed and determined to be a certain way, and that creates a good atmosphere, good work.
What do people expect out of you?
As of now I can’t really tell because I’ve just done one film. But I don’t know…some people don’t expect anything out of me!
And you’re angry about that?
No I’m not at all angry. In fact I love it because it gives me an opportunity to surprise them.
What films are you working on currently?
I’m shooting Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania, (a Karan Johar production again), which will release later this year. The next film is Two States based on Chetan Bhagat’s novel…the trailer’s coming out soon.