From Gangs of Wasseypur to Mimi, actor Pankaj Tripathi has come a long way proving to be an actor par excellence with every role. The actor recently spoke about stereotyping in Bollywood, based on looks, and said a case-in-point was that of Reliance Industries Chairman and Managing Director Mukesh Ambani. “If Mukesh Ambani was not a businessman and he went for an audition, he would never be cast as a rich man since he doesn’t look like that,” Tripathi said.
“Cinema has created a stereotype that a doctor looks like this and an engineer looks like this. During an audition, even if a junior artist is required, it is plainly stated: affluent look, elegant appearance. In movies, we see doctors like Katrina Kaif, but how many times have we seen them at AIIMS?” Tripathi said in an interview with ANI. The actor said that the situation now is changing but in the past, movies were rife with stereotyping.
“Hero dheere se muskurate hai par villain zor se haste hai aesa humne movies mein dekha hai par hakikat mein khul ke hasne vaala dil ka acha hota hai (The hero laughs softly, but the villain chuckles aloud. We’ve seen this in movies, but in fact, the person who laughs openly is compassionate, ” said the actor.
Tripathi rose to prominence after appearing in Anurag Kashyap’s Gangs of Wasseypur, and he has since played other significant roles including Fukrey, Masaan, Bareilly Ki Barfi, Fukrey Returns, Stree, among others.
In his soon to be released film Main Atal Hoon, the actor has essayed the role of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
Sharing how he prepared himself for the role, Tripathi said, “I was scared, how will I do it, I don’t know what will happen, how will it happen, I took seven-eight days to think. I also took my friends’ suggestions…they thought that I was the correct person. Bhanushali (producer Vinod Bhanushali) then said, ‘If you don’t do it then I will not make this film’. However, I was afraid of how much justice would I be able to do to the character of respected Atal ji. I didn’t know how much I mimicked as I didn’t know imitation and mimicry, that was the challenge. He is a huge personality and it is not possible to bring the story of that personality in a two-hour story on cinema.”
The former Prime Minister harboured a deep love for literature and had authored several poems.
Recounting how he cast himself into the role of Vajpayee, Tripathi said, “I have narrated Atal ji’s poems in the film but it is not exactly in the same way he did…The essence has been maintained, there are pauses at some places, but a slight twist has been done. In the film, at some places, the poem is also recited in the voice of Atal ji.”
He added, “This is the story of a child from Bateshwar who later becomes a poet and politician named Atal Bihari Vajpayee and becomes the Prime Minister. During research of this movie, I have found that a man should be people’s leader from within. It is not possible for someone to like everyone’s ideology and everyone thinks that my ideology is right. There should be agreement even in disagreements, people can criticise me also and I will accept it.”
Main Atal Hoon is helmed by director Ravi Jadhav. The film is written by Rishi Virmani and Ravi Jadhav.
Earlier, during the launch of the film’s trailer, he opened up about his interest in politics and how he prepared for Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s biopic.
He also recalled a funny anecdote from his college days when he joined Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) during his college days.
“I was in a youth wing. I have participated in mandolins. I was even jailed for a week! Toh main uss raaste pe nikal chuka tha. Then I realised that the path of politics is full of thorns. Hence, I took a turn and started developing an interest in street theatre. There was Kaildas Rangalaya, Patna, where I enrolled myself. Mujhe laga ki yeh behtar hai. Yahaan kam se kam bol ke acting hoti hai ki ‘main acting kar raha hoon’,” Pankaj quipped.
The film is all set to hit theatres on January 19. It is backed by Bhanushali Studios Limited and Legend Studios, Vinod Bhanushali, Sandeep Singh, Sam Khan and Kamlesh Bhanushali.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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