I’d have gone berserk if I hadn’t met Sargam Singh, an actress who soon became my wife. Within a year of our marriage our daughter Ameli was born. Sargam gave up her career to look after me and our daughter.
Personally, I believe that playing the lead antagonist is always better than a character artiste, whose weightage isn’t much.
My mother is very fond of cooking and whenever I am home she ensures that I eat the best food prepared by her, because of which I gain a lot of weight.
Rohit Shetty liked my acting in the movie ‘Theeran,’ which released in 2017. He believed that I would justify the role of a baddie in ‘Sooryavanshi.’
The first two days that I rode a horse, I had someone controlling it with a rope around its neck.
When I moved to Mumbai I had no acting background and so was unable to make a breakthrough for years.
People in the South are very organised and are thorough professionals besides being good paymasters. They are very disciplined and start and wrap up work on time.
I decided to do theatre intensely. I joined Makarand Deshpande’s group Ansh. He became my guru. That’s where I met Anurag Kashyap and Kay Kay Menon. These were the people who supported and inspired me.
A run-of-the-mill bad guy role does not satisfy me creatively.
I’m not the type who will go and ask people for roles.
In ‘Rakht Charitra,’ I had equal screen space to that of the lead.
Karthi is such a wonderful human being. He is always focused towards improvisations and keeps working on it.
There was a lot of aggression in me. It comes from my Bihari roots, I guess.
As for Bollywood, actors are no longer typecast there and I’m happy to be in that phase where the industry is evolving for the better.
Playing a sadhu is not easy at all.
Acting gives you freedom to express your thoughts.
That’s my only plan: to keep doing good roles and win appreciation.
When you work with Vikram, you give your best. It brought out the best in me.
I realised that if I wanted to act, I needed to join theatre where I could improve my acting skills first and also show my talent.
Gulaal’ gave me a chance to channelise my restlessness into a character that had layers of complexity.
Srideviji is a powerhouse performer. She has been my favourite actor since my college days and to share screen space with her is a dream come true for me.
As a boy from Patna, I’ve always dreamt of a chance to showcase my talent.
Not many people know that it was Manoj Bajpayee who recommended me for a role in ‘Aks.’
In India, people still want an image to connect to and, even if it’s a false one, they will stick to it. We are ready and want to be fooled by someone or the other, be it a baba or a politician.
I have learnt the hard way that neither success nor failure last forever.
More than anything else it pleases me to know I’ve made people back home in Bihar proud of me.
I know Sanskrit, which has similarities with Tamil, so it helps me understand the language.
I have done a lot of television serials in order to make ends meet.
It does take a lot of time to establish yourself with your own hard work.
Even though I have been receiving offers left, right and centre, I have been a little choosy about my projects.
Getting back into shape is always a difficult task for me.
I have always tried to portray each role as differently as possible.
Eventually, after the hero and heroine, it is the antagonist who comes with the most anticipation in any film.
I have stopped expecting from films. What I expect never happens.
I’m very much a family person.
I had zero connection to Bollywood or movies when I started out. I worked in theatre for eight years where luckily Makarand Deshpande mentored me, helped me to improve my body language and voice modulation.
There is no such thing as playing someone else’s character. Every actor takes a character and makes it his/her own while enacting it on screen.
Sandalwood is a force to reckon with. People from all over are investing time and money here because the films have good reach and reap good rewards as well.
In Bollywood, it is common for shoots to have unexpected delays and go well into the night, but shoot schedules in the South are mostly wrapped up by evening, unless absolutely required.
I guess some characters always remain the same, and Macbeth is one of them.
After my debut in 2001 in ‘Aks,’ where I had a small part, I had to work really hard to get work in the industry. For almost three years, I had no work.
I was introduced to the world of films by Manoj Bajpayee and trained under theatre actor Makrand Deshpande.
Mythologicals and historicals have always found takers in India. The audience identifies with them and they make for good family viewing.
Luckily, ‘Rakta Charitra’ did well in the South and I started getting a lot offers from the Tamil and Telegu film industry.
I believe films are the mirror of society we live in.
I was pleasantly surprised that south directors started creating roles for me after watching ‘Rakta Charitra.’
The police or any higher authority should never try and criminalise people for their sexuality. It is something that is to great extent given by God.
I think once you get noticed as an actor you get roles irrespective of the characters you portray.
I can’t begin to tell you what a pleasure it was to work with Vikram. He is such a brilliant actor and so hassle-free.
It is a big deal to play the antagonist in a Rohit Shetty film.
I’ve stopped making plans a long time back because they never work in my case. Now, I just take each day as it comes.
I used my television phase to save myself as an actor for the bigger screen.
People in the South want heroes to be their own, whereas it is easier for them to accept a villain who hails from another state.
The first thing that strikes a person when it comes to Southern film industries is the hard work, professionalism and the punctuality that people religiously adhere to.
Acting in different languages doesn’t stop you from growing; on the contrary, for an artiste, it helps a lot.
It’s not easy trying to get into the psyche and behaviour patterns, which are far removed from one’s own personality. Some intense characters linger long after it’s over on screen.
10 Endradhukulla’ is a thriller and the characters are all on the run. The film travels from South India traversing through the North, to the mountains where the climax takes place. Mine is a different kind of character; he is very suave and stylish and only later it is discovered that he is not what he looks like.
The first eight years in Mumbai were specially tough. I knew during the first two months of my stay that there’s no point waiting for hours to meet producers. They won’t meet you and definitely won’t give you a role.