John Abraham
GLOBAL MOVIE MAGAZINE|September 2019
I Can’t Be Part Of The Crowd...

Is there a sense of validation in the fact that you’ve managed to stir debate with Batla House?

From day one, Nikkhil [Advani, director] told me that it’s not only about an encounter, but we are narrating the story of a man and his experiences post that encounter. We wanted to make it a human story which I am glad has been appreciated by the audience. In fact, DCP Sanjeev Kumar Yadav’s wife Shobhana Yadav called me three days after the film released and said, ‘You have shown everything about my husband exactly the way it is, including the pauses. It felt like I was watching him on the big screen.’ Sanjeev was so thankful because there were times when I could go overboard to play to the gallery but I decided to play him. He told Nikkhil, ‘I am proud of me.’ For me, that was my biggest validation. Priya (Runchal, his wife) loved the film. My father wanted to congratulate Nikkhil for making a beautiful film, an acknowledgement he has never made in the past.

Reinvented and reinvigorated, John Abraham on the most gratifying film of his career, Batla House, and surviving, despite rejecting Bollywood camps

The first thing John Abraham notices are my colourful sneakers. Over the years, we’ve bonded on our collective love for shoes, as much as movies. There’s something to admire about Abraham’s repertoire, an example of how a gorgeous hunk of a man, most talked about for his looks has managed to evolve himself into a credible actor. “For the longest time in my career, I was called wooden,” he admits but that never deterred him from exploring new ground till he found his beat. As his recent outing, Batla House, opened to steady numbers and much critical acclaim, John and I settle for a chat in his office about his newfound affinity for the patriotic brand of cinema, his trysts with the effort to be taken seriously and the way forward for his production house.

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