Karan Johar has given us phenomenal films. We know Karan as one of the finest filmmakers in Bollywood whose movies resonate real life love, heartbreaks and friendships and hold a window to every emotion and drama, making it a perfect watch. The reality check he gives in his films can be attributed to his real experiences. Karan Johar is no more guarded about his personal life. He has spoken many times about his sexuality and doesn’t shy away from opening up about being a gay.
Karan Johar is revealing all this and much more in his newly released biography titled ‘An Unsuitable Boy.’ A Times of India report shared some edited excerpts from KJo’s biography, which has been co-authored by Poonam Saxena. The report, with due permission from Penguin India, also has Karan answering the big question – Is he a gay?
Karan Johar has come out candidly on matters of sex and sexual orientation, just stopping short of a bald admission.
WATCH VIDEO | Exclusive Interview With Karan Johar
One of his quote reads as, “Everybody knows what my sexual orientation is. I don’t need to scream it out. If I need to spell it out, I won’t only because I live in a country where I could possibly be jailed for saying this. Which is why I Karan Johar will not say the three words that possibly everybody knows about me.”
Karan also talks about being traumatized by rumours about him and good friend Shah Rukh Khan. Though he treats SRK as ‘a father figure, an older brother,’ he admits of waking up to 200 hate posts on Twitter daily. “This whole homophobia is so disheartening and upsetting,” says Johar. Karan Johar feels, ‘People talk nonsense, and if a man does not have an extramarital affair, he is supposed to be gay.’
— Penguin India (@PenguinIndia) December 29, 2016
Karan, in the biography also mentioned that he lost his virginity at the age of 26. Talking more about the experience, he narrates, “Why would I say this on record if it were not? It’s not something I am proud of. It was in New York. Up till that point, I was sexually completely inexperienced. Even when I was a kid, I was very backward in this department. I still remember the first time someone told me about blow jobs. There was a kid in class who told me, ‘You know what a blow job is?’ I said, ‘No, what is it? I’ve heard about it though.’ He said, ‘You take off all your clothes and put your fan on high speed, and that’s a blow job.’ I said, ‘I can do that. What is the big deal in that?’ And at 12, I remember, I removed my clothes and put my fan on full speed. Later, I told him about it and he said, ‘You did it!’ I said, ‘Yeah, yeah, I did it three times.’ He said, ‘You had three blow jobs yesterday!’ I said, ‘Yeah, I had three blow jobs.'”
Further, Karan talked about his consciousness about his looks and how and when he started to work on it. He writes, “While growing up, I was combating a hundred issues in my head. The thought of sex made me awkward; it almost rattled me. I thought, am I asexual? Why am I not feeling this? Why am I not doing anything? There was a lot of turbulence in my head. For me to address it, talk about it, discuss it, was a big no-no. I brushed it under the carpet all through the making of Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge and Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. At that time, I was also very large and was grappling with my weight issues. I felt physically undesirable. Post Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, I had actually started working a little on my looks. I had lost some weight and had groomed myself a bit. Finally, I had developed a little spring in my step, a little confidence. That’s when my first encounter happened, after the release of Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, out of the country.”
About his feelings and thought on the idea of sex, Karan says, “To me, sex is a very, very personal and a very intimate feeling. It’s not something that I can do casually, with just about anyone. I have to invest in it. I’ve always handled the rumours that came my way. There has been so much conjecture about my sexuality.”
He had more to speak on the rumours with Shah Rukh. He writes, “For heaven’s sake, for years there were rumours about Shah Rukh and me. And I was traumatized by it. I was on a show on a Hindi channel, and I was asked about Shah Rukh.’Yeh anokha rishta hai aap ka,’ the interviewer said. He worded it in such a way that I got really angry. I said, ‘If I asked you if you are sleeping with your brother, how will you feel?’ So he said, ‘What do you mean?'”
“I have never ever talked about my orientation or sexuality because whether I am heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual, asexual, it is my concern. I refuse to talk about it…I have not been brought up to talk about my sex life. I know I am the butt of many jokes, pun intended. I know how my sexuality is discussed. I have become like the poster boy of homosexuality in this country. But honestly, I have no problem with people saying what they want about me. Twitter has the most abuse. I wake up to at least 200 hate posts saying, ‘Get out, you’re polluting our nation, you’re dirtying society’ or ‘Shove [IPC Section] 377 up your arse.’ I get this on a daily basis and I’ve learned to laugh it off…One man came up to me once very cockily at Heathrow airport and said, ‘Is it true that you are a homo?’ He was with his wife and child, and he asked me this. I looked at him and said, ‘Why, are you interested?’ And he said, ‘Hey, what-what what!’ And I said, ‘Don’t what-what me.’ And I walked out…Some major sections of the English media are very sensitive in the way they approach this question. I’ll be asked, ‘Oh, there is some conjecture about, you know, your sexuality.’ Everybody knows what my sexual orientation is,” writes Karan.
Karan is very close to his mother Hiroo Johar. Talking about her his, Karan writes in his biography, “The only thing that bothered me was when people stood on the high moral ground and said, ‘Why was your mother in the front row?’ But she’s cool…Do you know that I tried to stop her from coming but she insisted? So the thing I told her was, `Mum, laugh. Do not squirm and do not be embarrassed for me because I’m not embarrassed for myself.’ If they’re going to make jokes about my sexual orientation, I’m okay about it. I’m not embarrassed about who I am. I’m not apologetic.”
Karan Johar feels sad while talking about the societal pressures in our country. “I’m embarrassed about the country I live in vis-a-vis where I come from in terms of my orientation.I’m sad, upset and disheartened with the trolling that happens on social media… At the end of the day, this whole homophobia is so disheartening and upsetting. And then they say, ‘Why don’t you speak about your sexuality? You could be iconic in this country.’ But I don’t want to be iconic anywhere. I want to live my life. The reason I don’t say it out aloud is simply that I don’t want to be dealing with the FIRs.” writes Karan.
Karan might come across as a happy-go-lucky man on camera, ready to take on his friends and actors on film sets or even his show’s couches, but a sneak-peek into his biography only shows his sentimental side. The words he has penned down in the biography prove he has gone through enough in his otherwise glossy life. And only when you have taken all the challenges with utmost confidence and in a non-apologetic manner, will you have the courage to speak about it loud and clear. ‘An Unsuitable Boy’ is just one of the platforms where Karan has vent his heart out, and his confessions about life are inspiring.
We salute you, Karan Johar!