Ayushmann Khurrana: Win shouldn't cloud my judgment of stories
Tackling another brave subject in Dream Girl, Ayushmann Khurrana talks about how National Award brings recognition and responsibility
There is a sense of contentment in Ayushmann Khurrana's voice. Ask him if it is owing to the recent National Award win or his upcoming film Dream Girl, and he attributes it to the joy he derives from being a genre-breaker. "I am able to find courage in telling stories more radically. After Article 15, I have plenty elbow room to display my range. So far, I have been known for the middle-of-the-road films, but Dream Girl is a full-blown masala film. I have performed it on the front foot," enthuses Khurrana.
Even as he describes the Raaj Shaandilyaa-directed movie as an "ode to the '90s brand of comedy", the actor cautions that it is, by no means, a frivolous film. "There is a strong message about gender fluidity hidden amidst the slapstick fun," he asserts, referring to the film's central idea that sees his character mimic a woman's voice to hilarious results. "Growing up in the '90s, I have thoroughly enjoyed Govinda's movies, and Dream Girl is our ode to those comedies. We have evolved as a society and as an industry, and thus the film is important to remind us of the movies that brought us unadulterated joy."
A still from Dream Girl
Having taken on unique subjects in his seven-year career so far, Khurrana has cemented his position as one of the bravest actors in Bollywood. He says that his National Award win for AndhaDhun (2018) only reaffirms his faith in his choice of stories. "I feel reassured that I have got my basics right. But the paraphernalia surrounding a win of this magnitude shouldn't cloud an actor's craft or his judgment of stories. Even now, I am yet to sign a film after Gulabo Sitabo because I don't want to rush into choosing scripts. Also, I don't want to lose sight of the things that keep me grounded. Balancing my personal and professional life is sacrosanct for me."
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Ayushmann Khurrana ecstatic over his film winning National Award