What is it like to be sons of a famous father? On the occasion of Father’s Day today, Danesh and Kayoze Irani let us in on their life with talented actor father, Boman Irani. We meet the three extremely amicable gentlemen for a conversation peppered with wit and playful barbs at their Dadar Parsi Colony home. Edited excerpts from an interview:
Boman Irani (centre) with his sons Danesh (left) and Kayoze (right) at their residence in Parsi Colony, Dadar. Pic/Shadab Khan
Q. Would life be different if you didn’t have a famous father?
Kayoze: We have seen both sides of the coin. I remember the time my father was not famous. Of course, life is different now, but sometimes you take the small things for granted. We also don’t get to spend as much time together as we used. I really enjoyed that aspect of chilling with the family. Life is different, but not a 180-degree shift. It was a slighty simpler life, but the food on the table has never been simple.
Danesh: I don’t think anything has changed. Life would have moved a little... there is a little disturbance now when we go to a restaurant.
Kayoze: Not a big deal, but we think twice before going out. We pick and choose the places.
Q. Boman, do you see yourself being the father that your dad was to you?
Boman: I did not have a father around, so I didn’t experience that at all.
Q. Do you fear/worry that things come too easy for your children and they might take them for granted.
Kayoze: He will never let that happen.
Boman: The definition of working
hard has changed. My struggles were of a different kind. I have seen them slog on the sets. They work really hard and
I don’t think I need to worry about that.
Kayoze: Absolutely. During school and college, we had a normal life. We went by bus. Now that we are living comfortably, we have to figure out how to maintain that lifestyle.
Boman: (turning towards them) A lot of parents say, “I have worked hard, when I retire, you guys take care of me and your mother... take us for fancy holidays, take us for fancy meals, buy me the latest stuff.” One’s lifestyle shouldn’t change just because one has retired. It’s not about luxury, it is about being together. I want my sons to have time for me.
Kayoze: He always complains about not meeting enough, even if we are together all the time.
Q. What’s one life lesson you have learnt by watching your father lead his life?
Kayoze: Everything. He’s not taught us anything, He has always led by example. First of all, it is his humility.
Boman: He thinks I overdo the humility. (laughing)
Kayoze: When fans come over to him, he says, “Hi, I am Boman.” They obviously know your name because they are your fans. He is not the preachy kind. If I go to him with an issue, he plays the philosopher card. He never lets us get bogged down by trivial things. He would just say don’t let these things take over your personality. Take a deep breath and go back to basic values of honesty, integrity and humility.
Danesh: I say I have learnt how to deal with people from them. People who are serving you, people who are your equals, people who are your bosses — there’s a very gentle/graceful/without-letting-the-other-person-walk-all-over-you way of dealing with everybody, whether it is financially, professionally or personally.
Q. Boman, what has fatherhood added to your personality?
Boman: It’s difficult to answer this question. Transition happens smoothly.
I think the boys take a lot of strain off me... that doesn’t answer your question. To me, the most important thing in the world is unity. As long as these guys are around, I know that they have the same values and they have my back. If they didn’t get along, it would be of worry to me. They are good with family and great with society and are people with integrity. After that, whatever happens is inconsequential.
Q. Boys, one advice you would want to give your father?
Kayoze: I wouldn’t like him to alter his personality, but I feel that he can be less emotional than he is. I don’t want him to change, though.
Danesh: My small suggestion is that he take better care of his health.
Q. Anything about him that embarrasses you?
Kayoze: His humility, but then I realise that it is a reason to remember him by, the way he goes about dealing with his fans (laughing).
Danesh: Embarrassed? No. It’s not embarrassing. Sometimes he gets a little hyper about catching a flight.
Kayoze: We are always early for flights. We can catch the earlier flight to the same destination. He’s hyper all the time. Once at Hong Kong airport, we were shopping at duty-free, and he made us run towards the gate.
Boman: (laughing) I goofed up that day. Huma (Qureshi) and Deepika (Padukone) were also with us and shopping. I made them all run. The flight hadn’t even landed.
Kayoze: He said final call and we were sprinting towards the gate.
Danesh: This is not an isolated case. This is every time.
Boman: Did you notice that they didn’t give me any compliments during the interview?
Kayoze: Okay. We were teenagers and we didn’t take life very seriously. Dad become an actor. He was shooting in Malaysia. He took us and the extended family for a holiday. Business class, nice suites... Danesh and I realised
that if we want to do this with our families, we need to get serious with our lives. I wouldn’t want our relationship to be any other way. We have a great friendship. It’s an adaptive relationship and it works well.
Danesh: I am lucky to be in Boman Irani’s home, but people get it wrong. They think it’s because of his fame
and fancy lifestyle. It is because of the person Boman is, that’s why we are lucky.