Chandan talks to CS about his role and living in Mumbai.
On cloud nine
I am humbled by the appreciation I have received so far. Somewhere, it is also a sign that my career is moving in the right direction. This role has been my toughest one till date. It was a lot of hard work because I could not base my character or identify it with someone I knew. However, the film was made at a relaxed pace, which gave me time to absorb my character, and work on the nuances.
My dad was furious when I told him that I wanted to pursue an acting career. But today, my parents are quite proud of me. In fact, my mom who has come over from Delhi is very curious to know what people have to say about my performances. Of course, they do worry about things like me buying my own house and getting married (laughs).
Journey so far
My life in Bollywood has been topsy-turvy. Though I earned good reviews for Kaminey, my career didn't take off as I expected it to. After a lull, things started falling in place all over again. You need to be patient. Just imagine, even Nawazuddin (Siddiqui) had to wait for so long to be recognised.
The Bong connection
As a youngster, I watched films by Ritwik Ghatak, Satyajit Ray and Mrinal Sen. I genuinely feel the kind of films they made were at par with world cinema. Bengali potboilers made these days are similar to those made in Bollywood. I can't see myself in such projects, as they don't match my sensibilities. I wouldn’t mind doing a Bengali potboiler if the story is an original one and relates to the region. What I love about Bhojpuri cinema is the fact that their films retain their own regional identity. This sense of identity is getting blurred in Tollywood.
The outside view
If you look at history, the best films in Hindi cinema were made in the 1950s-60s. Peoople who started the Hindi film industry, the Punjabis, Marwaris and Sindhis, the majority of the lot, had come to India post partition. I remember Rishiji (Rishi Kapoor) telling me how everyone in the industry from those decades had a story to tell. They had seen society and faced problems. Then, we had poets like Kaifi Azmi and Majrooh Sultanpuri, who were greatly influenced by the politics of the time. Circa 2012, 50 years later, outsiders in Bollywood are again making a mark with their films and unique way of story telling. I feel that we have entered the second best phase of Hindi cinema.