This week John Abraham jetted into London on a whirlwind 36-hour visit to promote his new film Jhootha Hi Sahi. BollySpice caught up with the half-Indian, half-Persian actor at the official launch of his latest release. We spoke to John about what it is like to go from handsome hero to bespectacled geek for the movie, AR Rahman’s soundtrack, and what’s next for one of our favourite stars in the film industry.
What is the film about?
Well, it is a comedy, as most people like to laugh and have a good time when they watch a film. It is a romantic comedy and very relatable, as everyone who is married or who has been in a relationship can say ‘that has happened in my life’. I am just looking forward to people seeing a film where a guy has to lie to get his love, and how that one lie leads to a thousand other lies.
This is the first time that you have played a geek role. As a model-turned-actor did you not miss showing off your famed physique?
Honestly, when I was told that I had to shave, wear glasses and not go to the gym, I told my director Abbas I’m really worried because people know me for my physicality, which is fair enough. But after now seeing the film I gave Abbas a hug and said ‘Thank you for not letting me go the gym and thank you for changing the way I look’. The thing about the change of look is that either people would like it or they wouldn’t. That’s the fear going around your head. But after seeing the film I am worried that they may like it too much.
So ,the film seems to show a different side to John Abraham?
When I saw the film I loved the character, and forgot about John Abraham within the first five minutes of the film. What stays with you is the character Sid who owns the book store, who is very timed and very shy, is bespectacled and stammers when he sees a beautiful girl.
It sounds a little bit like Pyaar Impossible. Did you get acting tips from Uday Chopra?
No, though I think Uday is a darling. He’s a really sweet guy and I always wish him all the best, though I unfortunately have not caught that film. I think Steven you have seen more films than I have. Name the last few films you have seen and I’ll tell you if I have seen them?
Okay, have you seen Robot?
How about Anjaana Anjaani?
Yes. (Laughs) I remember you in it! But I haven’t seen the others. I haven’t seen quite a few films in a long time Steven not for any other reason, but because I have been very busy with the shoot of my other film that has gone on the floors, so I have just been so busy with that and I have a lot of films to catch up on.
The music has been composed by AR Rahman.
Yes. He had worked with Abbas on his last film Jaane Tu… Ya Jaane Na, and loved the script of this. There’s a song called ‘Call Me Dil’ which I listen to about 50 times a day. The last song I was obsessed with in a film of mine was ‘Yeh Hai Meri Kahani’ from Zinda by my very good friends a group from Pakistan called Strings. I asked Rahman ‘Did you enjoy the film?’ and he said ‘I can only tell you you’ll get a lot more fans after this film’. There is no one better than the maestro to really tell you.
What’s the biggest lie you have told John?
Well, the biggest lie that a man can tell a woman, and one that I have done a long time ago in the past, is to tell a woman ‘I love you’. Although with due respect to women, they are also good at convincing lies.
How do you find shooting in the UK?
Well, I am going to be here again for six months starting in February doing Desi Boyz a comedy with Akshay, and Dostana 2 – with or without the trunks. I love shooting in London, the people are really nice and friendly. Both are laugh riots. Desi Boyz is a crazy comedy about two people leaving their jobs, and Dostana 2 takes off from where we last left it where the trunks were pulled down. I then have a couple of other films, like the sequel to Race coming.
There is a lot of pre-release hype over Dostana 2. Do you know anything about the script? Has Tarun (Mansukhani) spoken to you about the sequel?
Oh yeah. I read the first half of the script. It is so hilarious. It is so funny that you can fall off your chair. The second half of the film Tarun is not happy with, though Karan, me and Abhishek were all happy, Tarun wants to work a little more on it. So we start the film next March and we are in London April onwards I would assume.
And can you give our readers any insider info on the project?
Well Dostana 2 has moved to London because Abhishek’s mother (Kirron Kher) is from there. She wants her son and his best friend in London for some crazy thing that she is up to. So it is even funnier now and I think it is going to create a laugh riot in the auditorium. People are going to be laughing and screaming loudly.
As BollySpice reported earlier, Jhoota Hi Sahi has been pushed back a week, and will now hit the box office October 22. We are beyond excited at seeing John in a new avatar, and are expecting big things from a post Jaane Tu… Ya Jaane Na Abbas Tyrewala. Can’t wait to see which John we like best, the beauty or the geek. Keep tuned into BollySpice, as we have lots more Jhootha Hi Sahi news, for you plus an interview with Abbas Tyrewala as we count down to the movie’s release.
Photo credit: Sunny Malik