MUMBAI: When 17-year-old Alia had walked in for auditions of Karan Johar’s next titled ‘Student Of The Year, the film-maker had a sense of deja-vu: Karan was reminded of “vintage Pooja Bhatt”.
Recalling the auditions, and sharing his initial reserve in casting her, Karan says, “You should have seen this tubby girl singing to Sonam Kapoor’s song ‘Bahara’ from ‘I Hate Luv Storys’, with all her jhatkas and matkas. It was hysterical! She was too good, putting her hair up and aping the typical Bollywood heroine to the hilt. I couldn’t help thinking, ‘Here is a modern, affluent girl who has the perfect mannerisms of a Hindi film heroine!’ The moment I saw her name on the shortlist, I told my assistant directors to call her in.”
[pullquote_left]I packed her off to a dietician and three months later, she was back in my office, 16 kilos lighter, looking svelte and exuberant.[/pullquote_left] Daughter of filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt and actress Soni Razdan – Alia Bhatt was more than prepared to put in hard-work towards becoming an actress. Said Johar, “I just asked her one thing, ‘Will you lose weight?’ Without blinking, she said yes. So, I packed her off to a dietician and three months later, she was back in my office, 16 kilos lighter, looking svelte and exuberant.”
Apart from Alia Bhatt, Vinod Dhawan (director David Dhawan’s son) and Kayoze Irani (actor Boman Irani’s son) will also make their debut in Dharma Productions ‘Student Of The Year’. The movie also stars Tiger Shroff, producer Kumar Mangat’s son Abhishek Pathak, and Ram Charan Teja (son of Telugu actor Chiranjeevi). Slated to be a high school drama the film will release this year on 19 October.