After actor Varun Dhawan, filmmaker Karan Johar on Wednesday apologised for his “nepotism rocks” act at the IIFA Awards in New Jersey that created a stir on social media last week.
Karan, the son of late filmmaker Yash Johar, along with actors Varun and Saif Ali Khan, took a jibe at actress Kangana Ranaut by bringing up the nepotism debate at the awards gala.
Later, they received flak on social media with Twitteraties calling their act “disappointing”.
While Varun apologised for the act on Twitter on Tuesday, Karan said that he also feels that it’s talent that rocks and not nepotism.
“Of course, I don’t believe that ‘nepotism rocks’. Of course, I believe that only talent rocks. If anything that rocks, it’s your talent, hard work and conviction. It’s the energy you bring to your job,” Karan said in an interview with NDTV news channel.
“What we said was meant to be a joke, which I think has been misplaced, misunderstood and I think it went wrong. I regret it,” he added.
Karan also said that it was entirely his idea.
“The idea of that joke was entirely mine, so I take onus of the idea of what we said. And I think we went a bit too far with the Kangana mention,” Karan said.
Karan and Saif, who were hosting the gala, revisited the much-talked about nepotism issue that started in Bollywood when Kangana branded Karan as a “flagbearer of nepotism” on his chat show “Koffee With Karan” earlier this year.
“No matter what I say or feel about my issues with what Kangana said on my talk show ‘Koffee With Karan’, I think I was raised to be a dignified, a chivalrous and a decent person. That’s the upbringing that I was given and I feel that I failed on those accounts,” Karan said.
“I felt that no matter what my thoughts or personal issues are on this, I should not have repeatedly brought that up. For that, I’m deeply regretful,” he added.
When Varun joined the two celebrities on stage at the Metlife Stadium to receive the Best Performance in a Comic Role for “Dishoom”, Saif joked that the actor had made it big in the industry because of his father.
“You are here because of your papa,” Saif quipped.
Varun said: “And you’re here because of your mummy (veteran actress Sharmila Tagore).”
Karan then promptly added: “I am here because of my papa (late filmmaker Yash Johar).”
They then said in unison: “Nepotism rocks.”
While addressing the charge of nepotism, Karan said: “I want to once and for all say and close this chapter after this and subsequently I will not speak about nepotism nor Kangana because it would be distasteful for her and it would be ungraceful at my end, which I’ve already been.
“Nepotism is easy access, nobody can deny that, but what you do with that access is what moulds you into a professional.”