She may hail from one of the most revered families of Bollywood, but Rhea Kapoor cuts a casual figure in her navy cape and denims. With Anil Kapoor for a father, and Sonam Kapoor and Harshvardhan Kapoor for brothers, she’s cradling her niche in the family with utmost comfort. “I feed off the power that’s there behind-the-scenes. Nothing beats the feeling of knowing that you’ve created something,” she interjects when I ask her about her decision to strike out on her own as a producer.
Despite their affinity to Bollywood, behind closed doors, the Kapoor family is a grand ole American sitcom, just minus the automated laughter track. Or so she’d have me believe. Having just wrapped up an enlightening panel discussion on helping parents follow their dreams at the Ensure Dreams Survey 2017 launch, she sinks into a sofa and takes me on a tour of all that goes on behind the gilded gates of the Kapoor household.
ELLE: Despite hailing from a family of actors, you’ve struck out on your own and made your mark as a businesswoman. How has the support been at home?
Rhea Kapoor: I’m able to take the risks I do because of my fabulous support system. Yes, I make films for young girls because that’s what I like doing. I don’t need to fill a void with my career or with money or with being famous. I have a famous father, sister and brother, but not once have I felt any less than them because I chose to be behind the scenes.
And that’s only because I was given so much love and confidence as a kid. You learn to love yourself and that lasts a lifetime. Of course, by support, it doesn’t mean that everyone has to agree with you. But you just need to know that if you fall, they’ll be there to catch you.
ELLE: What’s the one health secret that’s been passed down the generations in your family?
RK: Eat home-cooked meals. I’ve probably gone out to eat with my parents barely 50 times. That’s across a span of 30 years!
ELLE: 2 things that you’ll never discuss at the dinner table?
RK: We always keep money talk outside. And we aren’t big on discussing politics while eating either.
ELLE: What’s the family policy on dealing with online trolls?
RK: I’ve never responded to all the hate online; I know Sonam does once in a while. It’s different to state your opinion, if you’re having a constructive argument. I’m a lot like my dad that way; I come from a place of constant gratitude so I don’t have the space to be a bitch.
ELLE: Has Anil Kapoor ever gone through all the memes on his older movies?
RK: My dad only cares about his work and his family. He’s such a joyous person that even if I make fun of him, or show him a meme, he’s the first one to start laughing, “That’s a good one.”
ELLE: Apart from throwing fabulous parties, what are the 3 things that the Kapoors do really well?
RK: I really do throw good parties, that’s a fact. But we also take pride in feeding people, making people laugh and loving people.
ELLE: …All of which ties back into throwing a good party.
RK: Except that I don’t love people at my parties. I’m just all, “Get ouuut!” [laughs]