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Milind Soman: There is no need for superstars or supermodels today

Milind Soman: There is no need for superstars or supermodels today

Ironman Milind Soman was in Delhi recently to announce the dates for the fourth edition of the Pinkathon,which is going to take place in the capital on September 4. In a conversation with us, the model-actor talks about the 'running sari' that they are designing for Indian women, why he doesn't consider himself as a career actor and why we don't have any supermodels today.

What's the idea behind designing a 'running sari' for the marathon? Most Indian women are not comfortable running in conventional shorts. So, we want to give them a special sari, which is lighter and has less volume of cloth, so that they can feel comfortable running while wearing it. Indian women have saris to go to the market, weddings, kitty parties and even sit at home, but they don't have a sari to run in or exercise in. So, whether women want to do yoga or exercise, we want them to feel comfortable. Are you in talks with any fashion designer for that? Yes. The designer is from Delhi and I really like the style. The look has to incorporate the famous weaving styles that we already have - like Banarasi or the Ikat. It should be recognizable. Women should be able to say 'I want a running Banarasi or Chanderi'!

We have a lot of actors who are brand ambassadors of many social causes, but unlike you, are not involved with the cause on the ground. Why is that? I don't know why they are not working with the initiatives they have signed up for because it's not like they aren't interested in doing something for the cause. Maybe they don't know how and need someone to chalk out what exactly they can do to make a difference with respect to the causes they are involved in. If someone like Priyanka Chopra says she will give a cause 12 days of her time in a year, I will actually make those 12 days make a difference. Right now, actors are just tweeting, posing, cutting some ribbons and maybe giving a speech, but in order to do something in a more effective way, we need to have a plan to make a difference. I can do that for every single actor, based on their personality and their interests. If they are interested, I can design a package and tell them - you give me 12 days of your time and tell me what cause you are interested in. I will make sure that your 12 days are used in the most effective manner. But, there's nobody doing that. You are also called the Ironman... As I completed that triathlon challenge, I became the Ironman. The next challenge I am doing is the Ultraman and every year, only 150 men become ultra men. So, this is slightly more challenging than Ironman.

How do you stay fit? I eat everything, except for refined sugar. There are four things you need to pay attention to. First, you need to get enough sleep so that your body is re-energized while you are sleeping. The second thing is food. You need to eat healthy - which means freshly-cooked home food. Third is regular exercise, and the final thing is to have a positive mindset. Whatever situation you are in, you must learn a positive lesson from it. However bad it may be, you must come out learning something that makes you a better person. You got great response for your last movie, 'Bajirao Mastani'. What made you say yes to the role? I have forgotten why! It was fun and nice and I loved the sets. I haven't seen the movie yet, though I want to. I have seen some clips. I am very happy with the response. It took up a lot of my time, but I enjoyed it.

Why do you say it took up a lot of your time? Because I'm not a career actor. I enjoy acting, but it's a different world. For me, acting is like taking a break from everything else and it's fun and all, but I can't do it all the time. So, after some time, I get an itch. It was 100-days of doing just one thing, so it became difficult for me. Why are you not a career actor? One - I can't be because I am not someone who can do just one thing in life at a point. I need to explore different things, learn new things, experience all kinds of stuff. So, if I was just acting, it wouldn't be enough for me. It was not a conscious decision I made. It just happened right from the beginning - I wouldn't say yes. Instead I would say - let's do another film, it's going to be fun.

Were you picky about your roles or did you just not feel like taking up some roles? I did not feel like doing them. I'm not that picky! I anyway don't get too many offers. But I've enjoyed doing Marathi films a lot. And I would love to produce another film. As it requires more time, I think I need to devote one year to just producing a film, so it will take some time before that happens.

You were one of the biggest supermodels of your time. Do you thing today we are creating models, not supermodels? There is no requirement for supermodels in the industry. If you look at the way the society is today, there's a need for models,not supermodels. When we started, the US had supermodels, so everyone was like, 'Unke paas hain toh humare paas kya hai?' And we were five models, so we became supermodels. But even in the music and film industry, not only in India but everywhere, there are no superstars anymore. After Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan and the other Khans, there is only Ranbir Kapoor and Ranveer Singh. Do you not consider them to be superstars? They are stars, but their personality is not heroic. The kind of stories and characters they play are everyday kind of people with everyday issues. It's not one big villain that has to be fought and one woman that has to be saved. That era where you needed larger than life characters is gone, and now it's just the small things that matter. We are no longer saying, 'Wow, look at that guy'. So, there is no need for superstars in cinema anymore.


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