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Juhi Chawla: Don't think I'm such a good actress to play Salman Khan's mother

January 14, 2016 4:38:18 PM IST
By Shaheen Irani, Glamsham Editorial
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Would you like to be a teacher in real life?
Actually, now again after my kids, I've realized what fun it is to teach them; to make them to understand. My daughter is studious and she does her work so well that I never have to say anything to her. But my son he is all over the place. I love sitting and teaching Arjun (my son) and it's such a joy when they understand. I try to make it as simple and fun. We go and sit in garden and I try to make the atmosphere very relaxing. Now I understand why people become teachers - because when your child actually understands what you are trying to say to them it's a very fulfilling feeling. All my life I never wanted to be a teacher and now I am getting so much joy in it. While we were doing this film, I also realized that the reason they continue to be teachers is because teaching is the only profession which makes all other professions possible. You in your profession will go from running place to place to have cabin of your own to one day owning that space, but your teacher remains in that staff room from the beginning to the end. What a sacrifice that it is! She did not have that ambition that you have; she just wanted to teach children. She has given her whole life to teaching kids and what a big contribution it is to your life! She never has an office of her own and we never thank those people. So, that's the kind of thing - when I read this whole thing and the way it was moving, it's a very interesting story. We have got to do this.


A lot of women-centric films are being made now, what do you have to say about that?
It's very nice and encouraging that such movies are coming. What I want from the audience is that if they also want to see such films, they need to come to the theatre because if they don't, these films won't be made again. I think Shabanaji's viewpoint on this is also very interesting and I've not heard that before - that why don't heroes lend their name and come forward and sometimes do a smaller role in women centric role? That surely boosts the whole film!

There have been reports that Deepika Padukone has now hiked her fees; also, there is a huge pay gap between the hero and heroine, what do you have to say about this?
I don't think there's anything to think about because this isn't a new phenomenon. Even when you talk about women-centric films, Shabana ji is Shabana ji today because ANKUR, ARTH were made that time. In some film or the other, women have played strong roles. We may have forgotten about that and are saying such films are being made now, but Tabu became Tabu because she did ASTITVA and some other films in which she was playing a central strong role. This has been going on for a while. Heroes were paid more in the 90s and they're being paid more now. I don't see a change immediately. I think, rather than complain about it or say what can be done, just enjoy and do your work. Deepika is rising in her own way. What we used to get paid in the 90s is like a fraction of what the girls are being paid today. Probably, the heroines before me will think the same way that they were being paid a fraction of what I was being paid. It's rising.

'I love sitting and teaching my son'

Did you ever raise the pay gap question to the filmmaker in the 90s?
I feel I wouldn't want to compete with the hero or anybody, because eventually in life, the competition is not about you and someone else, but you with your earlier self. If you're better than what you were yesterday and tomorrow will be even better, you're rising. If Deepika has grown from being a 10 lac heroine to a 10 crore heroine, she has risen. Why does she need to compete with a Shah Rukh Khan or an Aamir Khan or anybody? She is Deepika Padukone, who will carry herself forward. Doing work, she may go to 20 crore! She doesn't need to look here and there. That goes for everybody, and this is a life lesson.

Priyanka Chopra is the first Asian to win the people's choice award, what would you like to say to her?
I'm obviously happy for her because I truly like her. She's a lovely girl, who carries herself with dignity and she has been bettering herself with every film. She is surprising you with her range. Today it's the global world. Earlier, say the heroines of the 50s or 60s, were only cinema. Luckily, for us in the 90s, Television came along and you could expand. Today, with Priyanka and Deepika, you can expand beyond Indian boundaries because of internet, television and all, you go global. So it is growing and she's growing with it.

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