“When I left engineering to pursue acting in Mumbai, I had my share of detractors who said I won’t be able to make it whether in theatre, television or films. But I’m not affected by negativity,” he says. In a candid chat with CS, Sushant spoke about his passion for acting and filmmaking:
Earlier, I did not care much for public approval. Now, when people connect with you and start expecting from you, then you can’t stay immune to that. After a show of Kai Po Che, I met a lady coming out of the theatre. She had never seen my television show, but she told me that after watching this film, she would definitely buy tickets for my next film. It was a very small thing but it stayed in my mind. So, now I know that I should not disappoint the audience.
Learning on the sets
I’m enjoying the process of shooting, because I’m getting to learn so much. Now I’m working with Rajkumar Hirani and Aamir Khan. Even if I share one scene with them, it’s a learning experience because they have such a huge body of work behind them. To give an example, one of the finest actors we have today is Daniel Day Lewis. But how many people know that he was in Gandhi? There’s a scene where a man is standing on the road and makes a remark on Gandhi. Then he goes away. That actor is Lewis. It was hardly a one minute role, but it’s the passion of the actor that makes him accept such a small role as he feels happy doing it.
Director in the making?
As an actor, you don’t have that much control over the audience, but as a filmmaker you have all the control. You can edit the film a certain way and show what you want to show. Filmmaking holds a lot of appeal for me. I recently made a short film on schizophrenia and I would like to make it into a two hour film. I want to see how it affects me and then maybe, I will show it to others. In the future, directing does sound appealing, but I need to learn about filmmaking first. A filmmaker has to have the knowledge of cinematography and editing in order to present his film. A sound knowledge of technicalities is a must. And for that, one needs experience. It requires some learning and I need a lot of time for that. Even when I act, I keep asking the technicians how certain things happen. First they get irritated, but then they explain it to me. (laughs)