Having filled themselves up with good food from Delhi on this promotional tour, the team of the upcoming film 'Tum Bin 2' - actors Neha Sharma, Aditya Seal and Aashim Gulati, plus composer Ankit Tiwari, visited the DT office recently. And besides the film, their other favourite topic was the food!
Why do you think fresh faces work better for the Tum Bin franchise as compared to established actors?
Aashim: It was a conscious decision by Anubhav sir (Anubhav Sinha, the director of both installments). He has made an exception with Neha because as he says...
Neha: (interrupts) Because I am fantastic.
Aashim: Yeah... What he says is that when he saw her auditions, he couldn't see anybody else fitting the role.
Neha: I also feel someone has to give newcomers an opportunity because you can have box office success with an established star, but the kind of freshness that a newcomer brings to a project, the enthusiasm and passion... If you talk about a huge star like Shah Rukh or Salman, it is difficult to see them differently from their off-screen persona and fit them into the character that they play.
Aditya: There are few of them - for me, it would be Aamir Khan who can be seen as a character first and then as Aamir Khan.
Aashim, you are from Delhi - how are family and friends reacting?
My family and friends are going to be more than excited because I am not from a filmi background, so they are very proud. I went to Mumbai alone and they have seen me grow... When I watch the film with them, I know it's going to be electric. My family is planning a premiere in Delhi and 20-30 of my friends will come to Mumbai.
Neha, how did graduating from NIFT Delhi help you in your career in Bollywood?
Neha: I think college years shape your life and for me, fashion was everything, initially. In college, when I was not in class, I used to be in the library reading about Armani and Versace, and I guess it helps you a lot as an actor because cinema is a visual medium and a lot of it is about the way you look, your clothes, your hair, makeup, and costumes do have an important part to play. It helps me a lot because I think I have a keen sense of what looks good on my body and what would not complement me. Eventually, of course, that is something I would like to do as a career option. I mean, I love acting, but I'd also love to get into fashion. I love what Kate Moss has done with Topshop... I give a lot of suggestions to my stylist and that's why I don't get along with them - because I tell them this is not looking good on me. Once you have studied fashion, you want to know and you are involved. I know I am an actor and that's not my job, but I have the bandwidth to know what is good and what is bad, so I would have an opinion. And it's not very good to have an opinion in this business - just saying.
Aditya, how much do you know about Delhi?
Aditya: My mother is from Delhi, but I know very little about it. I know that the patent dialogue is 'Tu janta nahin ki mera baap kaun hai', paani-puri ko golgappa kehte hain, and food - it's famous for food.
Neha: We just fed him butter chicken from one of the nicest places here.
Aditya, since you are trained in taekwondo, why didn't you start your career with an action film?
I wanted to, aur maine Anubhav sir ko kick maarke bhi dekhayi thi ke kuch daal dete hain. He said, tu mujhe maar le, par picture mein nahin daal sakte. Jokes apart, with a big franchise and such a producer and director, why would I have said no? And then, I was sold the moment I heard the story.
How do you all think the film will be affected by demonetization?
Aashim: It's a bold decision taken very quickly. If some time had been given, it would have been easier for people who don't have bank accounts. But it's for the greater good. Hopefully, it shouldn't affect our film. Please book the tickets online, everyone, and watch the film to chill out and take a break from all of what's happening!
Which are your favourite hangout places?
Neha: I have so many. Hauz Khas because it was the place where we used to hang out. Hot chocolate fudge was something I used to have very often. I was way younger so I used to digest it a lot more, now I can't afford to have that too often. I still do, though, I can't live without food. Chhola kulcha and noodles outside my college were everyone's favourite. I love the suji ke golgappe and you never get them anywhere else - not in Mumbai for sure. They keep saying bhelpuri of Mumbai (is the best), but the bhelpuri I had in South Ex market, waisi bhelpuri mujhe Mumbai mein nahin mili abhi tak. And momos from Defence Colony - I love them! I think I should stop now because everybody will be like 'how much do you eat?' I am a foodie, big-time foodie... My trainer works so hard on me, I have to give him credit for that!
Aashim, do you have the same list?
I have a longer list! Nagpal ke kulche, Sagar Ratna ka dosa... But basically I love chocolates and sweets - when it comes to this kind of food, I have to stop myself. If I start eating, then I won't stop.
So you must have missed Delhi food in Mumbai?
Aashim: Hamari shakal itni si reh gayi hai!
Neha: Once I moved to Mumbai from Delhi, it was difficult, and the biggest factor was food. I would keep hunting for restaurants. I still have sushi at this one restaurant (and she remembers that the chef has moved to another restaurant in Khan Market)... I used to go there every freaking day.