Circa 1990. Boy strums the guitar and sings Bas ek sanam chahiye. The girl reciprocates with Nazar ke saamne jigar ke paas. They met by chance,fell in love against all odds and stole kisses under a coat. Mahesh Bhatts Aashiqui was the quintessential date flick which redefined romance for that generation. The film made overnight stars of its lead pair Rahul Roy and Anu Agarwal. Cut now to Aashiqui 2,which is directed by Mohit Suri. This seasons new love birds are Aditya Roy Kapur and Shraddha Kapoor. Neither of them is a debutante,but both feel it is a new start to their career. In a conversation,they talk about their memories of the first Aashiqui,their take on love and their experience of repeating the magic of going under the coat.
What was the first thought that crossed your mind when you were offered the film,considering that Aashiqui is a cult romance?
Shraddha:I was thrilled to be doing a romantic film with Mohit Suri. Mohit told me that the reason he selected me was because when I met him the first time I was wearing my spectacles and my hair was tied in a bun. He told me that I looked real. Also since my mum is Marathi,it was good to play a Marathi girl.
Aditya:Hmmm…A hundred things went through my head. I had a few doubts,but soon enough Maheshji (Bhatt) and Mukeshjis (Bhatt) infectious energy and enthusiasm simply got me charged up. As soon as I heard the script,I was enthused.
Did you both ever feel the pressure of filling the shoes of the earlier protagonists?
Aditya:Maheshji told us one thing,the dreams are the same,but the dreamers have changed. Our film has similar shades,but its a different story. So I went ahead with a clean slate. Also,I had watched Aashiqui when I was really young and I didnt remember it vividly. I promised myself Ill watch it again only once I have watched my own film.
Shraddha:There was pressure initially. But then Mohit just took us away from it. He told us to look at Aashiqui 2 as a separate film and work towards it.
This time around,you have again gone under the coat and recreated that iconic moment from Aashiqui. Exciting?
Shraddha:Yes,it was. More so because this time I am wearing a sari,Aditya is wearing a suit,and we go under the coat while its pouring. I think this moment will again define the film.
Aditya:I was especially thrilled while shooting the poster because we were recreating 1990 again. It had nostalgia written all over.
Aditya,did you ever imagine yourself as a romantic hero?
Aditya:Now that I think of it,I never did. I would often imagine how it would be to be a romantic hero. But I never thought I would be able to pull off romance on the screen.
Shraddha:But he is pretty good (smiles).
Do you like romantic films?
Shraddha:I love romance and am most comfortable in this genre. I have been a huge fan of epic romances all my life. Pyaasa,Devdas,Prem Rog,The Notebook are few of my favourite films.
Aditya:Im a total action movie buff. I have been a Terminator fan. But talking of romantic films,I like Before Sunrise. I think it is a fabulous film. In Hindi,I like Silsila. It qualifies as a romantic film,right?
What is your favourite song from Aashiqui?
Aditya:Saanson ki zaroorat hai jaise… I am a huge guitar buff,and it has so much guitar in it.
Shraddha:He is a copycat. I love Saanson ki Zaroorat Hai Jaise. (giggles)
And from Aashiqui 2?
Both:Tum Hi Ho.
Do you believe in love?
Shraddha:Yes,I do. Completely.
Aditya:It must exist. Or so we all hope.
Unconditional love. Does it exist in todays world?
Shraddha:I feel it all around me,from my parents,from my pet dog. But I am yet to experience that love. So far,it is Ryan Gosling in The Notebook.
Aditya:I dont know. This was a concept which I perhaps believed in the seventh standard. But love does exist and we are all bound to experience it. At the moment,I am single.
at would your idea of a perfect date be?
Shraddha:A fairytalesque one. I am a traditional romantic.
Aditya:Good food is a must. What is a date without that?
Aditya:I became an actor by chance. So whatever I have,is a bonus. Having said that,when your movies dont do well,it is disappointing.
Shraddha:Films faring well or not is never in our hands. One has to just follow ones gut.
What has Aashiqui 2 taught you?
Aditya:It has given my career a new perspective. I was happy doing multi-starrers,but this movie made me explore a new side of me.
Shraddha:There are many scenes in the film,which required us to be really emotional. This movie taught me a lot about love and emotion. It got me really close to my emotional side.