Janhvi has a point Image: Fotocorp
Janhvi Kapoor is all set to make her presence felt on the screen for the first time with Dhadak. More than her debut, what excites her is the content of the film, which essentially talks of class divide and its implications on a simplistic love story. Janhvi feels Hindi cinema has somehow glorified class discrimination instead of depicting its horrors. The star-crossed lovers are shown fighting society and family, their struggles mostly overshadowed by their passion and romance — thus giving an unrealistic, filmi flavour to the real-life menace plaguing society since ages.
But she feels Dhadak, a remake of the popular Marathi movie Sairat (which dealt with the curse of casteism in Indian society), has a pretty realistic take on the issue. It doesn't glorify the battle against a classist society or family, rather, it holds up the mirror to the ugly truth.
Comparing Dhadak with other Bollywood movies, Janhvi said, "I feel up until this point, a lot of films in mainstream Bollywood have glorified that divide. Because it creates a sort of conflict — that 'I can't live without the love of my life'. I feel they have glorified that divide a little bit. But I think, it should be condemned and with Dhadak, we have set out to condemn it. That it's a harsh reality. Dhadak is not a Bollywood saga that ends with either the parents agreeing or typical, magnificent ending. It's an ugly truth."
Talking further about the issue, Janhvi added that she as well as her director Shashank Khaitan discussed how families fighting over class often end up destroying many lives as well as loves. "We found that very strange," she said.
The actor remembers discussing the class divide with Khaitan and says going into the film, it was a "pressing issue" to deal with.
"I remember Shashank and I talking about how classism is prevalent not only in the lesser-educated sections of the society but also in the well-educated strata," she said.
Well Janhvi, these are noble thoughts indeed, but do we really practise what we preach? We sure hope your film doesn't gloss over the class conflict, so central to Sairat's story.
Talking of her character, Parthavi, Janhvi says her on-screen avatar is stronger than her real self. Comparisons with Rinku Rajguru's Archie, the female lead of Sairat are unavoidable but the actor has already prepared herself for that.
"Archie's character was so inspiring to a lot of young girls. She didn't have to be saved. I'm fortunate to play Parthavi. She's also assertive like Archie, but a lot of that comes with her sense of pride and responsibility that she belongs to an effluent royal family," she said.
Her co-star Ishaan Khatter is relatively more experienced, having made his debut with Majid Majidi's Beyond The Clouds early this year but he never tried to get the upper hand, rather helped her react well on screen.
"I feel one film is worth a number of experiences, not only as an artiste but also as an individual that helps you channel a plethora of emotions. It's only going to be good for me and the film. I know Ishaan has helped me react well on screen but he never tried to impose. I learnt a lot from him," she added.
Coming back to the film, while Sairat was hugely appreciated for its realistic portrayal of caste conflict, whatever we have seen of Dhadak so far is giving us the feels of a typical Karan Johar movie (Dharma Productions is producing the film), with larger-than-life settings and candyfloss romance. We guess we have to wait till the film hits the big screen to see whether it really addresses the issue of class divide as promised, or gives us the same old wine in a new bottle.
Dhadak releases this Friday.
(With inputs from PTI)