Actor Gulshan Devaiah made his mark in Bollywood with films like Hate Story and Hunterr. Though his films didn’t do well at the box office, Gulshan’s performance as an actor was noted by the audience. The actor, who has been in the industry for eight long years, has only appeared in a hand full of movies and has been missing in action for a while. However, director Vasan Bala’s Mard Ko Dard Nahi Hota which released on Thursday brought him back and fans can now see him in a never-seen-before avatar. The film which also stars Radhika Madan and debutant Abhimanyu Dasani in the lead was well received by the audiences.
In a candid interview, the actor shared his experience of working with his co-stars and director Vasan Bala with whom he is working for the fourth time. He also share his mind on the changing trends in Bolylwood and how he is excited to share screen space with one of his idols, Manoj Bajpayee, in his next venture.
Here are excerpts from the interview:
The film has opened to positive response… what compliments have you been getting?
The response has been overwhelming. I have to literally pull my head out of the phone and it has been buzzing with messages from fans on social media and friends on WhatsApp messages. It is crazy but then people would like that work from me so it’s an amazing feeling. I enjoyed shooting for the film and we also showed the film at various film festivals including MAMI and it received terrific response. Hopefully, this will translate into numbers as well.
How much of a numbers person you are?
This game is art and commerce. Both are equally important and in an ideal world, both will travel together. But we don’t live in an ideal world. If you want to be part of the change, it has to make a significant impact. It’s about what significant impact your film has, plus the good numbers it has made that empowers you. The position in which Kangana Ranaut is today, she is empowered in that position and she is big because of the numbers that her films have made. She is a fantastic actor but is also bankable and has given numbers.
How was your experience working with Radhika Madan, Abhimanyu Dasani and director Vasan Bala.
It was important for the film that I and Radhika get along very well for the character that we both play in the film, so we jelled quite well. We spent some four months together before the film, actually going on floor and when you see the film, you will see the bond we have, it’s just amazing. Abhi (Abhimanyu Dasani) and I got along very well as we both are Arsenal fans and we bonded well on this mutual football admiration. Both Radhika and Abhi are hardworking individual actors and both struggled in some places but they gave their best. As far as Vasan is concerned, we are working in the fourth project, we first met on the sets of Anurag Kashyap film The Girl in Yellow Boots where he was an assistant and then we did a short film and then a film which is unreleased and now this, so we have always shared a good relation. He is one director who lets me bring in my expertise and opinion and is open to suggestions, so working with such a person becomes quite easy. We have always shared good relationship, not as best friends as we don’t keep in touch but we both think good of each other. You can say it’s an open relationship.
Last year many big star-studded films flopped at the box office but content films worked. What's your take on it?
It’s a complicated question as the taste of the audience keeps changing over a period of time and as filmmakers and actors, we have to keep working hard. Because people are figuring out a new way and medium of storytelling and experimenting. Over the years, people are used to seeing their particular actor in a particular role or character, for example, people are used to seeing Shah Rukh in a romantic avatar which he used to do 20 years ago but down the line, people still want to see him doing that but that is not possible. As an actor, we have to keep experimenting and bring change like he (SRK) did as he started off with negative shades and later transformed to romantic roles. So sometimes people like the different you and appreciate it while sometimes it backfires badly and you get criticised.
On sharing screen space with Manoj Bajpayee in Hinterland
I was a Manoj Bajpayee fan since the time I saw Satya. Can you ever imagine me or Nawazuddin becoming actors if Manoj sir didn't act in Satya? He opened the gates for us and working with him in the film is an amazing experience. We met a couple of times and he told me that he likes my work and that makes me feel good and motivates me to work harder and perform well as an actor. There’s still time for us to begin prep for the film but I am sure it will be a good experience.