It was little past 10 pm when the Greek God of Indian cinema, Hrithik Roshan, finally sat down to unwind and chat about his desire to achieve a mental high with every character he portrays onscreen, his life’s philosophy, his sons Hrehaan and Hridhaan, and more.
From Koi Mil Gaya to Guzaarish, Hrithik’s need to push himself mentally as well as physically to get into a character is well known. Even in his forthcoming Kaabil, the actor will be seen playing a visually challenged person. Quizzed if he deliberately prefers choosing to portray such difficult characters, he nods, “Yes. Because I have in my own life, many times, experienced the joy of accomplishing a task which I had initially thought was impossible (for me) to achieve or overcome. And whenever I have gone through that phase and emerged successful, tears rolled down my eyes. That state of achievement is a huge reward — it empowers you, brightens you from within, makes your aura shine and gives you a mental high. It can’t be described in words, it has to be felt. And since I have experienced it so many times in my life... I have become an addict. It gives me a rush. As soon as I start missing it, I go on a lookout for characters that can help me achieve that high.”
Courage, self-worth and love
The actor has always been open about his struggles, personal or professional. On what keeps him going through tough times, he says, “I face life with courage. I have learned that the very first thing one can do is become aware of one’s weaknesses. Weaknesses don’t make anyone lesser than others and that knowledge is important. You need to respect yourself before others do and accept all your flaws and shortcomings. I am a beautiful person from within — that’s what we all should tell ourselves. Your weaknesses are your gifts. They make you what you are and who you are. The journey of overcoming your weakness is rewarding and reforming. I am full of handicaps but I am who I am because of my flaws. I tell this to my children every single day.”
So have his children ever come up to him with their problems? “Right now, they are able to solve their own problems. I have told them to be their own problem-solvers. However, I challenge their minds by instilling different perspectives, thoughts and outlook to challenge their reactions over vivid issues and everyday matters,” he laughs.
‘I like variety’
Though he is considered one of the finest actors in the industry, we don’t see him in too many films. Is there a reason? “I am not (in the industry) for the awards, to earn truckloads of money or be the best actor in the world... I am here to enjoy myself, take pleasure in what I do and how I do it. I am here to be content in life and in the roles I play — as a father, brother, actor, friend, etc. I like variety. I am an adventurer at heart. I don’t know why people have this whole notion that I only want to be featured in larger than life movies! I want to do all sorts of movies… I am open to big, small, tall, short projects. Whatever it may be… it just has to be stimulating enough to provide me with variety.”
Stardom and children
Hrithik’s personal life has been widely discussed after his separation from Sussanne Khan. Does he ever feel that due to his stardom, his children’s personal spaces are invaded? “My fame and stardom is part of their lives. They better learn to accept it, embrace it and use it to the best of their abilities in ways they can contribute back. I have told them never to be embarrassed about your own father’s stardom as I have worked really hard for it. I have also told them to never shy away from all the importance they receive because they are my sons… because that’s a wonderful gift one can have.”