More than a decade ago, Randeep Hooda made his debut in Monsoon Wedding. He shared screen space with Naseeruddin Shah in the very first shot of his film career. Since then, the two have been associated with each other thanks to their collective interest in theatre. Presently, they are working together in their third film (their second film never got completed).
Needless to mention, Randeep is thrilled to be back with his guide. In a tete-a-tete, the 35-year-old actor refused to comment on his personal life but sets the record straight on a lot of other stuff.
Would you call Naseer your godfather in the industry?
Nope. I wouldn’t use such a ‘derogatory’ term for him.
So what does he mean to you?
Well, he’s my mentor, friend and confidant. He’s an inspiration and somebody who has helped nurtured me as an actor not necessarily my career but my craft. He’s also the one who opened my eyes to the world of acting.
Speaking of acting, do you think you’ve arrived?
In terms of my acting, yes, I’m definitely having my best phase ever. But I wouldn’t like to rest on the laurels as of now. I’ve got bigger dreams.
Then, what was your worst acting phase?
If you remember, that wasn’t very long ago. I was without any major work for more than two years! I was completely hopeless at that point of my career. And then I was even hesitant to play a negative role. Fortunately, filmmakers like Milan (Luthria) and Tigmanshu (Dhulia) walked along and showed faith in me.
Why did you agree for the cameo in Cocktail?
Homi (Adajania) is a friend and I guess I found something in that role. To me, it was unique so I don’t have any regrets, whatsoever.
Do you consider yourself as a part of Bhatt camp now?
I’d rather not be part of any camp. I’m just greedy for good work. As long as the association is mutually beneficial, it’s a win-win situation. At least, that’s what I hope for.
Do you think you’re a changed man now given the earlier reports that you had an attitude problem?
All I can say is I’ve changed the way I express. Earlier, people perceived me as an explosive Jat boy and had a calculated approach. As a result, most of the stories got blown out of proportion. Now, I’m a bit more careful.
You’re quite active in horse riding. How do you manage the time for it?
If you love something dearly, you’ll find the time for it. Anyhow. Besides, my horses are my solace from this mad, mad world of films.