We are not exercising our democratic rights properly. We need to stop looking for solutions in others.
— Kamal Haasan
When you don't take a stand against corruption you tacitly support it.
I audition for almost every role. I get into auditions even when I am just producing a film. Not that someone would fire me, but I keep trying various tests and keep working till I learn the job.
The box office is a black money laundry shop. No business is straight.
Would I get into politics? I'll just say what I tell people when they ask me this: Pray that everyday citizens like me aren't pushed to that corner.
When classical singers or dancers look at cinema with derision, I have half a heart to tell them that they're wrong. They're losing a platform.
The disgraces I suffer should be attributed to me, but the praises that I get go to my family and teachers. It is they who decided what I would become.
If I were to believe in the stories of the of the gods, then the gods do not need mortals to defend them, do they?
The creation of God itself, I deduced, came from our primal fear.
You must have anger, as rightful wrath is what makes you create your own ethical standards.
Once you attain stardom, you lose that finer touch with society. When you are a man on the street, you get to know every vibration. But once you attain this status, more than you, people become self-conscious by your presence.
Acting ceases to be work because I enjoy it. But it feels like working when I do bad work, especially when I know it is bad.
I've always believed in speaking my mind, and I think the technology has made it more prominent. Even a common man's voice is heard prominently now, much to the chagrin and surprise of politicians. They aren't used to that.
Acceptance is the only thing you should teach. Be it Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Dalit, you must inculcate acceptance, not tolerance.
Since I was 20, I wanted to make a short film and send it to international short film festivals. It never happened. I became too big a star to indulge in those things.
Politics is too big a game to feel the absence of a Kamal Haasan.
All my films are statements, especially when I write them.
We should work towards a legislation to sack non-performing politicians. This may not happen during my lifetime, but I will try for it anyway.
Today, we should look for people with great organizational skills to run a government - not just leaders, who are good with people.
If you ask my opinion, I don't look at a film according to its box office collection.
People keep saying Balachander discovered me. I differ. He invented me. When a stalwart like him suggests that I act in films, who am I to refuse?
The fact that I've lived this long is not really an achievement. Time passes; we age... it's natural. This is why it annoys me when a person watches a movie and tells me that it was 'time pass.' Would time not have passed if he hadn't watched the film?
When I was 16, I felt I might be left with some effeminacy because of all the dancing. I was so full of classical dance that I wanted to get away and do something else.
We got to go one step further than even 'Make in India.' Let's make India itself - India 2.0, the updated version.
I used to be a wannabe Genghis Khan and will always be that. He never lost any battles. Then I swung to the other side of the spectrum and settled on Mr. Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. Now I realise I should identify myself with those who strengthen my argument.
Happiness is perhaps painlessness, a state one rarely appreciates. Happiness, then, is very much like a great talent. It rarely gets appreciated and is taken for granted.
Sometimes we equate anger to destructive physical violence, but anger need not be martial.
You have to appreciate the finer points of your work; criticise, too, if needed. I am also my own worst and most honest critic. I can say things which nobody will ever dare say. Even the best of friends will stop at a point, whereas I can go beyond.
I've entered politics the moment I marked my finger with the electoral voting mark. So I've entered politics, but I am not a politician. I am doing my duty as a citizen of India.
I am very angry, and you don't need angry politicians. You need politicians with great balance.
Even if the country is run by a Mussolini, free speech will find its way.
If it doesn't reach the last poor man, your constitution is wrong.
There is a buffet of ideologies for me to choose from. I've been a fan of certain communist and socialist ideals. Some have failed, some have succeeded. I've lived long enough to understand where all they failed.
I'd like to keep updating myself. That's the only way to make life interesting. And because I am a performer, I like to do it deliberately and with purpose.
If my idol Mahatma Gandhi could fight to eradicate corruption at the age of 78, why can't I try at 60?
There is a lot to be learnt, and I am always dissatisfied. I am happy but not content.
All stars are businessmen. Once you decide to become a star, you are talking about money, fame, and being successful.
I write the occasional poem. I think my dabbling in poetry makes me better at screenplays. Poetry teaches the value of condensing, the importance of talking in a few words.
A political party is about an ideology. And I don't think my goals in politics can match the ideology of any political party.
I am opposed to autobiographies, mainly because most autobiographies lie.
I love reading all the mythological stories. I was brought up on them.
The most feared thing should be death, but after a lot of rumination, I have settled to fear incessant pain. It is not a 'screaming hysterically' kind of fear but a silently lurking one.
I am not the opposite of theism. I am right in the middle of those non-believers and believers. It's not even about being agnostic or nastik. Why would I take a name given to me by my opposition? I am just a rationalist.
I don't remember myself to be a forefront fighter, but when pushed to a point with a wall behind me, there is only one way forward. Later you can call it a Rambo syndrome, but I never regret it, as it comes naturally to me, and in my mind, that is the only way.
Tell me, when do you become a respectable person in society? When you start respecting yourself. That is when you take care of yourself, that is when you comb your hair, groom yourself, and cleanse your body. You do all this because you respect yourself.
I don't have tiffs with people. I only mind my business, but whatever interferes my freedom of expression, I have always voiced.
Entering politics would be like donning a crown of thorns.
As a principle, I will never react to film criticisms. As long as they are part of film fraternity, whatever they say will be beneficial to cinema.
I have been vociferous against government on things like beef. I used to eat beef, but I've stopped. That doesn't mean others shouldn't eat beef.
I cannot live on myths; somehow, science convinces me more easily. I am prone to lean towards science, ethics, and philosophy rather than myth, religion, and rituals.