An actor is as good or bad as his director: John Abraham

Handsome hunk John Abraham talks about Force 2, him lifting a 598 kg car in the film and his role as a producer

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The film Force 2 is all set to spread some thrill and action-packed performances on the silver screen this Friday. Just before the release of his next release, Bayside journal caught up with the handsome hunk John Abraham for a tête-à-têtes .

The actor spoke about various topics ranging from the gravity-defying action he has performed in the film to what is it like to be a producer and about his love for comedy films. The film Force 2 has John Abraham and Sonakshi Sinha in the lead. It revolves around a man, whose evil intentions puts the nation under deep threat by killing a Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) officer.

What is Force 2 all about? 

Force 2 is the continuation of Force. My character’s name is ACP Yashwardhan, who is an honest police officer in the film. In the previous part, I have lost my wife and my entire family. In the sequel, something happens to my friend and I want to go on a mission to help him. So, Force 2 is about this mission that has been borrowed from true incidents that have occurred to Indian soldiers. When my character has to go on this mission, he isn’t trained for it. This is the reason why he is accompanied by a RAW officer (played by Sonakshi Sinha), who is his senior.

While filming, you were seriously injured. How were you injured? 

I had to break through some seven to eight doors. I broke through those doors but I slipped on one of those doors. Then, I had to film for a rooftop action sequence, so I kept aggravating my injury. I kept going in and out of hospitals. I destroyed my prepatellar bursa, my kneecap. It got really bad.

Do you think that when things like the life of a RAW agent are projected on 70 mm screen, it destroys reality?

My previous film Madras Café taught me how to make a film and I believe that Force 2 is the perfect answer to it. No doubt this is a commercial film, but we did all the research we could. We did our research way before we decided to put this film together. We met real life RAW agents, officers, soldiers, and spies. We have also tried to understand how a female RAW officer would dress and how a male RAW agent would wear; these little things make a film. When you see Force 2, you will enjoy it. You will be able to believe that this is what happens in India and across the world. Force 2 is a very credible film and as I am co-producing it, I had to make sure that facts are right.

As a producer how do you pick a film? 

There are some producers who make proposals, but as a producer, I try to make films. In a proposal, the producers talk about the number of songs, the leads dancing, what they would be expected do and so on. I understand that, but I don’t disrespect them. I, personally, believe that one needs to concentrate on the content of a film. Automatically then the characters fall into place. For even Force 2, I didn’t think of it as a franchise film or that we had Sonakshi Sinha on board, I just concentrated on the content. I would like to credit our director because he actually felt the need to think about whether the audience would be convinced while watching this film? Would they like it or will they get bored? Would they find the film to be too long? And he has tried to answer all thoe questions in 1 hour 58 minutes. Like in the beginning of film, we have mentioned that this film is ‘Dedicated to the unsung heroes’ and in the end, we have shown snippets from where the film was inspired from. So, when you come out of the theatre thinking, ‘Yeh toh commercial film thi, par yahan pe toh sach bataya gaya hai’.

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Photo: : Facebook/ John Abraham)

While making a film how do you go about the research? 

Research is something that you can get from anywhere. A while ago, a big actor offered me something and I refused at the time because I was working on Madras Café. So he asked me the same question. I told him you can get literally research done from anywhere, books, Internet and so on. For example, if I am making a film on army officers, I would personally go and visit these officers and speak to them. For this film, we met RAW agents. You can’t sit with them and be like “hi, hello, what’s up”. That’s not how it works. I visited an Eastern European country and I met a family there. When I came out of there, someone told me that I had just met a RAW agent. I was like “He doesn’t even look like one.” He then told me, “He isn’t the RAW agent. His wife is.” You don’t really know when someone is a RAW agent. He won’t sit here like John Abraham. He is someone who will just look around on the sly. He is a regular human being.

There is this buzz about you lifting a 1320 pound (598 kg) Mercedes-Benz in the film. Tell us about that scene.

It was quite difficult. Of course, you get help from the transmission that shifts the weight ratio. But still lifting a car that is between 400 to 500 kilos is very difficult, even if you have support. When you are supposed to hold it up, which was what I was meant to do, it is very tough. Trust me, it would be backbreaking for anyone. It’s not easy; try holding up a Nano (laughs).

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Why do you think people would want to see Force 2?

First, because it is credible, next we have made sure it is entertaining and is telling the truth. Like a villain will look like today’s villain, it is a proper commercial film that one will enjoy. The director has kept a great balance not trying to reveal too much of reality. It is a commercial-credible film. You know you are told what to do; so as Steven Spielberg and Anand Rai have said, “Actor is as good or bad as his director”.

You enjoy comedy a lot. Tell us about working in that genre

I love comedy. It is something I really enjoy. I like really spastic comedy for example something like ‘Welcome Back’.  So there is this scene of the graveyard in that film that I enjoyed every bit. People felt what stupidity I am doing, but when the kids were laughing, I knew my job is done. I don’t think we are here to make an intelligent film, I think we are here to make an entertaining film.