Currently basking in the success of ‘Rocky Aur Rani Ki Prem Kahaani’, celebrated filmmaker and television personality Karan Johar is currently at the Toronto International Film Festival for the premiere of ‘Kill’, a film produced by Johar’s Dharma Productions and Guneet Monga’s Sikhya Entertainment. While in conversation with Film Companion’s Sneha Menon Desai, Johar spoke about receiving hate, expressing his individuality, the movie ‘Kill’ and more.
Unapologetic and flamboyant, Johar spoke candidly about himself and said that he thinks that it’s probably “cool” to hate someone like him. “I’m also, like, pouting at age 50 into a camera, I sometimes wear shiny clothes and walk the red carpet, I’m coming across catty on a chat show, I’m laughing like a hyena sometimes; can be annoying. I’m everywhere. You put on the TV I’m endorsing a product, I’m judging a reality show, I’m hosting a talk show. I can be annoying to people who don’t know me as a human being. So, it’s kind of cool to hate this person because you don’t know them and you find that what the hell is going on with this person’s life and I can understand why I get the hate,” said Johar.
He further added, “Just know that I’m as vulnerable as you are. I’m as emotionally fragile as you are. My heart has been broken in love many a time, I’m a single parent which is a tough job, I did lose my father at a young age and I work really hard still and really seek validation. So, I’m just like anybody else and I hope that those people who come into my life, the ones who have even hated me, give me a chance because I’m not that hateful. I feel that there’s a lot of love I have to give.”
Johar also said, “I have gone through so much and I have realised that being myself, living in this skin and being proud of it is what really should define who I am. I am not here for judgment or what people have to say about me. I want to live the life on my own terms, the way I want and without trying to cater to anybody else.”
Talking about ‘Kill’, which is directed by Nikhil Bhat and has received rave reviews at TIFF, Johar said he had initially wanted to remove Dharma’s logo from the film, which is a co-production of Dharma Productions and Sikhya Entertainment. “I was like, ‘Guneet, I have one recommendation.’ She asked, ‘What?’ And I said, ‘Can you remove the logo of Dharma? Can we do something else? This (Dharma’s intro music) is not going with Kill.’”
Johar also revealed that he enjoys violent, slasher films. “John Wick is one of my favourite action franchises, and I love ‘Raid’. People would not associate me with that kind of cinema because they think I’m think kind of person,” he said. “It gives me a major trip like when I watched those movies. So, producing ‘Kill’ seemed very organic to me.”
Johar admitted during his chat with Film Companion that he has one fear: “I fear the irrelevance. When people come up, I love that if I can be there to give them a photograph, a selfie, or speak to their parents back home. I’ve done it all. Sometimes it’s not possible when there are larger crowds but otherwise, I love it. I never say ‘Oh I’m going to a city because I don’t want to be recognised’. I love the fact that people know me, I love that they watch my work, whether they love it or not but just the fact that my work is being viewed by people, I feel blessed. I unapologetically and unabashedly love the limelight.”