Varun Dhawan: ‘Who doesn’t want to work with Shah Rukh and Kajol?’

While the action-drama Dilwale is highly anticipated for the reunion of Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol, the storyline also relies on another promising acting duo – Varun Dhawan and Kriti Sanon. They talk about the film and their experience working with Bollywood's favourite on-screen couple.

The Dilwale cast, from left, Varun Dhawan, Kriti Sanon, Kajol and Shah Rukh Khan. Sarah Dea / The National
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While fans have been eagerly awaiting Rohit Shetty's action-drama Dilwale for the reunion of Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol, the storyline also relies on another promising acting duo, Varun Dhawan, and Kriti Sanon.

Dhawan, who we first saw on-screen in the 2012 romantic comedy Student of the Year, is the son of film director David Dhawan. Model-turned-actress Sanon made her debut last year in Heropanti. Both of them won Best Debut Filmfare awards.

Ahead of Thursday's release of Dilwale, the young stars talk about what it was like to work with superstars Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol.

What is the film about?

Kriti: This film is about love, family and family bonds. It's got a lot of comedy and fun in it, of course. But eventually, it's about dilwale [being big-hearted].

What is your definition of Dilwale?

Kriti: A person who is large-­hearted, who is willing to forgive and move on.

Varun: When you love someone selflessly.

When you signed up for the film, did you know you would be starring with SRK and Kajol?

Kriti: I pretty much had a clear idea of who I was going to be working with. That was one of the main reasons I said yes.

Varun: Who doesn't want to work with Shah Rukh and Kajol? No one in my generation can say that they have worked with both Shah Rukh and Kajol. I can say that I have – in one film.

What is your fondest memory from the filming?

Varun: There was an emotional scene that I had to do with Shah Rukh, and after the scene was done, he hugged me and patted me on the back for a job well done. That meant a lot to me.

Kriti: For me, the whole Hyderabad schedule was very memorable. We shot there for about 50 days and that was when all four of us filmed together for the first time. We used to spend a lot of time together after pack-up and bonded really well.

Was it intimidating working opposite two of Bollywood’s biggest stars?

Kriti: Not at all. I will repeat something Shah Rukh always says: 'There is no senior or junior actor ... an actor is an actor.' Working with them was a lot of fun. They helped us both a lot in our performances. So, when you are working with them, you do learn a lot. They are actually not intimidating as people, and they make you feel really comfortable. I think they both are more young at heart than me and Varun.

Varun: I was an assistant director on My Name is Khan [2010], which starred both of them, so I already knew them in that way. They both just make you really comfortable when you work with them. Kajol laughs easily and fools around a lot on the set.

Are you looking forward to the UAE debut?

Varun: We are quite excited. This will really connect the UAE's Asian community to home. They will be able to relate to the characters and the family in the film. The UAE is one of the biggest international markets for Indian films, so we are really hoping the country will give us lots of love.

Kriti: This film has a lot of heart in it. It's a film that the whole family can watch together, go through different kinds of emotions and walk out with a smile.