John Abraham doesn’t buy into the dad bod phenomenon
He’ll take those ripped abs to the grave if he can
John Abraham fronts Johnnie Walker Blue Label’s #DateWithDad campaign. Not because he can drink you under the table – he’s a teetotaler; mostly because he really takes after his dad, we think. We caught up with the actor about his return to the big screen (after two whole years), and what he makes of the dad bod:
What’s the fondest memory you’ve shared with your dad?
“Watching the World Cup football matches with him. We’ve done that from the time I was very, very young till last year. And watching all the tennis matches – the French Open, Wimbledon, US Open… It’s a ritual; my brother, my dad and I always get together. And if I can’t be there, my father stays awake and watches them through the night. He’ll call me up to give me minute-by-minute updates.”
What the best advice he’s given you?
“My father always told me, go without a meal but don’t cheat anyone. He really taught me to be honest, and never bribe. Never break the law. So even when push came to shove and I felt like I was put in a corner…even when he was not around and I had to take decisions which involved crores of rupees, I chose to be honest. That paid off. It lets me sleep well at night. And I can proudly say your credibility is more important than your career.”
How often do you go “God, I’m exactly like my father!”?
“I’m eccentric like my mother. My mom nags. She repeats the same thing a hundred times a day. I think I’m exactly like that. I’m repetitive to the point of being annoying. Imagine if I told you, ‘Don’t forget to record this interview’ at least 20 times. You’ll be like, “OKAY! I got it.”
How does your team put up with it?
“They have to smile. I feel bad for them sometimes. (Laughs) From my father, I’ve got a bit of OCD. He’s SO CLEAN and keeps everything in order, and my mom’s a mess. My mom used to play basketball for India, so I definitely get my interest in sports from her.”
We’ve been meaning to ask… Since you like to keep fit, what do you make of the whole dad bod phenomenon?
“Everything is a phase. Just like dad bod is a phase, six packs are a phase. When you lead a healthy lifestyle you don’t need a six pack. It’s better to be fit than have a dad bod.”
So no dad bod for you then?
“Not ever. I don’t think I’ll ever have a dad bod. Not till the day I die. I need to be ripped in my coffin.” (Laughs)
How do you keep fit?
“I just work out every day. Eat right, sleep right. Kill it in the gym like there’s no tomorrow. I play football, occasionally. Not as much as I’d like. All my friends Ranbir Kapoor and Abhishek Bachchan play every Sunday and I’ve not yet joined them. Otherwise, it’s more CrossFit, functional training, TRX – different forms so you get fitter.”
Tell us about your forthcoming projects?
“My next film is Welcome Back but I don’t know when it’s releasing, and after that I’ve got Rocky Handsome, which releases sometime in October. I start shooting for Dishoom [with Varun Dhawan] around July and Force 2 around August with Abhinay Deo.”
We haven’t seen you on screen for a long time.
“Yes, it’s been two years; August 27 will be two years to be precise. I don’t miss being on screen. It’s no big deal.”
So what’s kept you busy?
“Managing a football team is not easy. [He’s the co-owner of Indian Super League football team NorthEast United FC.] Especially when it’s your baby and you have to micromanage every little thing. It takes the wind out of you but it’s fun. I’m passionate about football, and so are the other co-owners – Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Abhishek Bachchan, Ranbir Kapoor, Virat Kohli… We’re a cohesive lot, unlike the IPL – which can be very competitive – we have common goal. Football needs to survive, and we love the sport.”
What’s your favourite cocktail to wind down with?
“I don’t drink at all. I have Champagne maybe once or twice a year, maybe a couple of sips. But I don’t drink. I wish I had a taste for some kind of tipple.”
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