Arjun Kapoor has revealed that he wanted to be a part of Shakun Batra’s acclaimed family drama Kapoor & Sons and also called the director to express his interest in playing the character who eventually went to Pakistani heartthrob Fawad Khan.
Karan Johar’s production Kapoor & Sons, which came out in 2016, featured an ensemble cast – the late Rishi Kapoor, Rajat Kapoor, Ratna Pathak Shah, Alia Bhatt, Fawad Khan and Sidharth Malhotra. Shakun Batra previously said in several media interactions that he had a hard time casting for the role of Fawad because the character was gay.
At a recent Clubhouse session hosted by screenwriter Aniruddha Guha and host Janice Sequeira under ‘The Bollywood Film Club’, Arjun Kapoor talked about how Kapoor and Sons were locked up for some time due to casting problems.
“Not many people know this, but I can confess it here now. I had called Shakun Batra when Kapoor & Sons was in jail for a while and said I’d like to do Kapoor & Sons. At the time, Shakun clearly didn’t see the casting hit the spot. I wanted to play the part of Fawad. I knew they would get stuck with that,” Arjun said.
However, the star of Sandeep Aur Pinky Faraar determined that he was never offered the film, but because he knew Shakun personally, he was able to immediately offer to be a part of the film.
“I was never offered the film, I had just heard that the film was being cast, but it turned out not to be an easy exercise. And I know Shakun personally, so I called him up and said, ‘I’d love to read and I feel like I can play that part too. I have no problem playing either/or wherever you want, but I’d love to work with you.’
“I keep laughing at him, ‘Tune Arjun Kapoor ko nahi liya but Arjun Kapoor ka name le liya (You didn’t use Arjun Kapoor in your movie, but you took Arjun Kapoor’s name).’ Because Sidharth Malhotra ended up being called Arjun Kapoor in the film,” Arjun said. Not only was Fawad’s character praised for breaking the regressive stereotypes of homosexuality on screen, but the actor’s performance was praised emotionally effective.
Even as a film, Kapoor and Sons proved to be a success, as the story of a dysfunctional family struck a chord with audiences.