“Sometimes I Feel Like A Meat Shop”…… John Abraham

 John Abraham Speaks  To Subhash K Jha  On His Body, &   Home-Remedy  For Homesickness 

You introduced the bare-torso six-pack look on screen?

I’m never ashamed of  talking about my body. Though at times I do feel like a meat shop.

So  why go on and on about your  body?

I am proud of my physique. But I   feel I’m also  good  with emotions. In fact I  perform the best when I’m unhappy. I function best when in angst.


You collaborate well with your directors these days?

Yes, I believe as much in my directors as they believe in me. You may be right when  you say I was  the  outsider when I did  Dostana with Karan Johar.  But  it took me no time to settle in.

Let me  ask you a   ‘straight’ question. Do  you think Indian audiences are ready for gay jokes?

I’ll give you  a  ‘straight’ answer. People laughed at  the Kantabehn track in  Kal Ho Na Ho . It was very essential  for  us inDostana to not take advantage of a certain sensibility  and project that as a caricatured as a joke.  We succeeded  in doing that  in  Dostana.

Happy to  be a  gay icon?

I’ve been told that. And I   accept it  very   graciously.  But women react as strongly  to me  as men.   Some  react to the  sensuality others to the fitness. But everyone has a query about my body. Sometime I feel I  belong to  a meat shop.   I really  am not comfortable talking constantly  about my anatomy. Very often  I don’t  know how  to  react.Initially it was fun to be  regarded as a body-beautiful. . Not that I believe  that  if  you show  your body you can’t act properly. I really like  fielding questions  on  food, diet and other clichés on health. I always  advise  people  to  be clean in  body mind and environment.

How important is your family to you?

I  really believe I’m   a   family person. My parents  are  the most important  people to me. Their   health  is very important to me.Looking with or without regret   is honestly   not my  space. I’d   much rather would look ahead.  I believe there’s   a third axis beyond contentment and regret, and that’s my   axis.  I can’t  have a two-dimensional    attitude to my  work . I’ll always  look and find  the third dimension. Conforming isn’t my cup   of tea. How boring  is life  if you conform. And   how dull life would be   if all I did  was chase success. Sure I want  it.   But   I also want to  take  the  untrodden  path.   It’s the deviations that make  my life exciting. Some of what   I did last  year might not have worked.   But the fact that there  was debate about them was enough  for me. At least    the kind of films I do   make people curious.

So you will  continue to  do “these” kinds of  films?

I will.  But I also realize my kind of    cinema needs  to be a  little  more commercial. You’ve   to position your product  properly.  Products fail  because  they’re sold   to  the wrong audience.  No Smoking   was   sold  to the wrong audience. My confidence level  in my kind of cinema remains  totally unshaken.   I can’t allow every opinion and every review to  devastate me. I   need to have confidence in  what I do. The fact that I’ve gotten   where I am  is proof that I’m on  the right track. I believe  I   need to do more about  my kind  of  cinema.

Whom do you take  into confidence about  your choice of films?

Everybody around me. I seek advice from those who work  with me, around me   .And the doyens  of  the industry who are far   more experienced than me.   Plus  I’ve  close friends  from   outside the industry who  can   look at my movies   dispassionately.

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