Rani Mukerji has been busy promoting her upcoming film Hichki. The film is an adaptation of the Hollywood movie Front of the Class, which was itself based on the book Front of the Class: How Tourette Syndrome Made Me the Teacher I Never Had penned by Brad Cohen. While the movie is being touted as the actor’s comeback, Rani has been asking her industry friends about their personal ‘Hichki’ moments, basically what made them overcome some of the biggest hurdles of their lives and become the powerful personalities that they are today.
October actor Varun Dhawan is the latest actor to share his story with Rani. On being asked about his biggest ‘Hichki,’ Varun shared how he suffered from stage fright in his early years. He also recalled how at times he would freeze or start blabbering things rapidly in front of the audience because of his fear. However, Varun was adamant to rectify his problem. He shares, “I decided to address it by listening and observing my idols. It didn’t quite work immediately. But gradually, I did learn how to tackle this challenge. I practised on it and eventually, could perform and speak onstage well.”
Rani asked Raid star Ajay Devgn to shed light on what he considered was one of the biggest obstacles of his life. The actor confessed that when he was about to make his Bollywood debut, people had their doubts about how an “ordinary-looking” fellow would make his mark in the big bad world of showbiz. However, the actor told Rani that he was quite confident of himself.
Rani also had a candid chat with superstar Shah Rukh Khan about his hichki moment. SRK’s answer was emotional as he recounted how he had felt a void in his life after his parents had passed away within the short duration of two-and-a-half months. The actor said that he wanted to fill that space, and release his pain via acting, which is what he went on to do. The star ended the chat on a thoughtful note as he said that while God gives pain, he is the one who shows the path to overcome that pain.
While Katrina Kaif has often been lauded for her dancing skills, this was not always the case, as the actor revealed in a conversation with Rani.
Katrina said, “For me, my biggest Hichki at the beginning of my career was dancing. While shooting for a Telugu film with superstar Venkatesh, Raju Sundaram was choreographing me. He looked quite irritated with my dancing but didn’t say anything. Later, while working on Wanted, I overheard him telling Salman Khan on set, that as a dancer, Katrina Kaif is Zero! I was shocked”.
She then revealed that how she trained hard with professionals to get the moves right and that choreographers Bosco-Ceaser gave her the boost of confidence she needed to film the dance numbers.
The evergreen Anil Kapoor spilled the beans on his hichki moment and said that his biggest fear was that his eyes would look too tiny if he smiled widely. The actor said that he learned to express himself in front of the camera over time.
Director-producer Karan Johar said that he was teased when he was younger as he sounded like a girl. The filmmaker was bullied because his voice was “not manly enough”.
“When I was a child, there were many Hichki moments. The one that I wouldn’t have changed today, is that I had a very girlish voice when I was a child. I had a very squeaky voice and I used to get teased a lot”, said Karan.
However, Karan said if given a choice, he would go back in time and not change a thing about himself.
“A gentleman who used to conduct public speaking classes, Mr. Nazareth told me that you are very conscious of your voice. When I told him that I used to feel awkward about my voice, he said that I should never be ashamed of who I am. And then to improve my voice (it’s texture), he worked out a course. So for three years, I would go to him and his wife thrice a week and they gave me speech training. It helped me speak and project and train my voice to find baritone. But I just feel like today, I would not change how I sounded. I wouldn’t do what I did and I wouldn’t make my children do the same,” quipped Karan.