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Exclusive! Varun Dhawan and Kiara Advani open up on Jugjugg Jeeyo, bond with Karan Johar, OTTs and more

They came to Kolkata for the promotion of their film, Jugjugg Jeeyo that will be released on June 24

  • Shamayita Chakraborty

Last Updated: 03.15 AM, Jun 22, 2022

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Exclusive! Varun Dhawan and Kiara Advani open up on Jugjugg Jeeyo, bond with Karan Johar, OTTs and more
Kiara Advani and Varun Dhawan at a Kolkata hotel during their promotion for Jugjugg Jeeyo

Varun Dhawan and Kiara Advani were in Kolkata to promote their comedy-drama, Jugjugg Jeeyo. The film also features an ensemble cast with Anil Kapoor, Neetu Kapoor, Prajakta Koli and Maniesh Paul in the lead and will hit the theatre on June 24. Before that, the duo talked exclusively to OTTplay about the film, their association with Dharma Production and how OTT is becoming a game-changer for the artistes.

Varun and Kiara share a long association with Dharma Productions. While Varun made his acting debut with Karan Johar’s Student Of The Year in 2012, Kiara too has worked on several films under the banner. While talking about his association with the house, Varun joked, “Kiara is doing more movies than I have done with Dharma. I think I did the least number of movies with Sidharth (Malhotra), me and Alia (Bhatt).” On a serious note shared his gratitude and said the production house and the people associated with it are like his family. “I want to do good films with Dharma and I want to work on films that work. They launched me. How much ever I give back, it’s going to be less. They introduced me to the film world. I have a lot of love in my heart for Karan (Johar) and the entire team that works there – Priyanka, Nilofer, and Ishita. They are the people who have been there with me from the beginning. I have a lot of gratitude for them. I feel they are family,” the actor said.

Meanwhile, Kiara has worked in Guilty, Good Newwz, Shershaah, and now Jugjugg Jeeyo, after her first work with Karan Johar in Lust Stories. Talking about her journey with Dharma, she said, “I haven’t been launched by them but Karan spotted me when I was not a commercially successful actress. I was still finding my way in the industry. That’s when he spotted me and gave me Lust Stories. He directed me there. When he called me I thought he was calling for some party. And he said he called me for a movie and he was to direct it. It was huge for someone like me who has grown up watching his films. It was like a dream come true. He gave me Guilty, Good Newwz, Shershaah and now Jugjugg Jeeyo. I think we have been a lucky combination. The films I have done under the banner of Dharma are loved by the audience and we are even loved at the box office. I am hoping for the same with Jugjugg. And I hope that this continues,” she said.

When asked about the importance of OTT space in today’s industry, both of them admitted that the platforms help them to explore more nuanced roles. Kiara said, “When I picked a film like Guilty, I had the confidence to take it up because I knew that it was going to reach the right audience. It is not a typical actress role and there are a lot of layers and grey shades. Sometimes you can do characters of a certain kind with OTT platforms, and even for cinemas. And as an actor, you know where you want to go so that it reaches the right audience. Tomorrow if you want to do a big-budget action film you want to ensure that it comes to theatres for that kind of visual experience. But if you want to take up a film or you play a certain kind of role that is made for a certain kind of audience, OTT lets you open up that market.”

Meanwhile, Varun admitted that he will be seen in darker shades of characters soon on OTT. “I think OTT gives us a chance to explore much darker and greyer characters. In films, I am always held back. I want to play darker characters. I think since Badlapur I haven’t played a dark character. I have been offered though. On OTT you will be seeing me in greyer characters in the future. As an actor, we cannot not work on OTT. My plan is definitely to do something darker.” There are rumours that Varun is a part of the Citadel Indian remake. In a cryptic comment, he said, “I can’t comment but whatever it is going to be it is going to be Prime.” OTTplay has earlier reported that the actor may make his digital debut with Citadel.

Meanwhile, Kiara is looking forward to the success of Jugjugg Jeeyo. “It is a family drama with a bunch of very good actors. I am really hoping that people love the film,” she said. Talking about her recent work in an ensemble cast, she said, “Ensemble cast holds you up as an actor, especially when you work with great actors. It only makes you bounce off and give back the same energy on screen. Hence, it makes the scene better. It also makes you better because you are as good as your co-actors. For example, a comedy scene will fall flat if the reaction of your co-actor is not on time and point. There is a lot of give-and-take in acting. Also, be it Good Newwz or Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2, I have been given a lot of love by the audience. So I have never really been overshadowed. Even in Jugjugg Jeeyo, it is about a family. I never shy away from ensemble casts. I think I bring more to the table,” the actress told us.

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