Rishi Kapoor and Ranbir Kapoor
Hiren Kotwani (DNA; July 5, 2018)

On Tuesday, when Mumbai was deluged, actor-filmmaker Rishi Kapoor got a day off. He decided to use his time to catch his son Ranbir Kapoor’s latest offering, Sanju.

In the past, Rishi has always held back his praise for RK Junior but this time around, he seemed to be genuinely bowled over. He says, “Compliments have been pouring in for Ranbir from varied quarters. I was at the lounge at Dubai airporten route to Mumbai from Mauritius when a bunch of passengers, who had caught the film overseas, walked up to me and showered praises on my son. I got to see the movie only four days after the release because I was away. And, I must say that despite everything I had heard, I was pleasantly surprised by Ranbir’s performance as Sanjay Dutt. It was subtle, sincere and so accurate. I salute Rajkumar Hirani, who is one of my favourite filmmakers. When Munnabhai MBBS released, I was one of the first to go to his home in Bandra East to compliment him. From that time on, I’ve always been a huge fan of the man. Besides Ranbir, I was impressed with Paresh Rawal and Vicky Kaushal. I was actually looking to speak to Vicky, but I am told he is in Serbia.”

The veteran actor continues, “In the past, I have heard many people berate Ranbir for his unusual choice of films. From the time he did Rocket Singh: Salesman of the Year (2009) till Barfi (2012), he’s had his share of detractors, who have been unkind to some of the movies that he did. Let me be honest, on a few occasions, even I used to think that perhaps my son had got it all wrong.”

Rishi continues, “But I have never voiced my views because Ranbir and I have a pact. I have never interfered in his career, I never will. Even 20 days before Sanju released, there were a few naysayers who did raise doubts on whether it would work and if Ranbir would be able to pull off his act as Sanjay, who is a larger-than-life-superstar. However, now that the film is here and things have worked out, I’m happy. The box office is the ultimate validation.”

The 65-year-old is glad that his son’s hard work and patience has paid off. He avers, “Ranbir has made Neetu and me proud. His decision to swim against the tide and still hold his own is something I appreciate. I salute his brave choices. I also thank people from across the globe who have showered their love and praise on him.”

He is hopeful that the Kapoor scion continues to do good work. He adds that among the current generation of actors, his favourites are Ranveer Singh and Varun Dhawan, besides of course his own son.