Bollywood stars who took their role research a bit too far

Jan 26, 2015, 07:30 IST | Shaheen Parkar

With Varun Dhawan admitting about having fallen prey to depression while prepping up for 'Badlapur', we take a look at actors who pushed themselves a bit more than usual to “get into character”

Acting is just like any other profession. More hardwork you put in, the results are going to be better. Looks like some of our young turks now realise that they need to dedicate themselves 24x7 for a character or role they are playing, if they have to prove their mettle. Unlike a few of their predecessors who perhaps just changed their hair style as part of getting into the skin of their characters, these young actors are not only going the whole hog, but even talking about it for that added advantage of publicity.

Varun Dhawan

Role switch
The latest addition to the list is Varun Dhawan. After his debut in 'Student of The Year' (2012), he went on to do films like 'Main Tera Hero' (2014) and 'Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania' (2014). But shooting for his upcoming film 'Badlapur', in which he essays a dark character, proved to be a unique experience. The actor has reportedly said that getting a feel of the character affected his mental health. He even claims to have seen a doctor for it.

Alia Bhatt
During Highway’s shoot, Alia Bhatt had asked her family not to accompany her so as to distance herself from the comforts of life

At the trailer launch for the film, his mother Lali Dhawan stated that Varun got so deeply involved with his character while shooting for 'Badlapur' that she started feeling he was a stranger. “If he had a knife, he would have first stabbed me. It was a change in his personality I was scared about, but I believe that was for the best.” Now that’s a bit of an extreme, but we get her thoughts. Varun, who led a cushy life, has also supposedly confessed that he was suddenly exposed to what he had not seen in life, so it hit him harder.

Ranveer Singh
The otherwise peppy Ranveer Singh cut himself off from the outside world and stayed in a Juhu hotel for about a week to prep up for 'Bajirao Mastani'

Life in isolation
Last October, Ranveer Singh cut himself off from everyone as part of his preparations for Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s 'Bajirao Mastani'. The actor checked into a five-star hotel in Juhu to be alone and mentally prepare for the role. Ranveer stayed there for about five days in anonymity and did not step out of the room. He requested the hotel authorities not to reveal information about his stay there. Ranveer also shaved off his head for the role. His idea was to disconnect with the world to be able to concentrate as it is his most challenging role so far. Taking his role play further, while shooting for the film, he did not talk to anyone on the sets. He scribbles on chits whenever he has something to convey to the unit folk so as to not lose focus. Reportedly, Ranveer even sought Farhan Akhtar’s help who had similarly isolated himself while prepping up for Bhaag Milka Bhaag (2013).

Soul talk
For her 2014 film 'Highway', living the vulnerable character of a girl being sexually abused at her own home made Alia Bhatt connect with the person within her. By her own admission, she had said that the film helped her evolve as a person and an actor. She even labelled it a therapeutic experience. Her co-star Randeep Hooda didn’t speak to her for days — till he had to actually utter a dialogue to her. He felt it would help in maintaining the distance from her, just like their on-screen equation.

Neeraj Kabi
Neeraj Kabi knocked off nearly 17 kgs to be appear convincing as an ailing monk in 'Ship of Theseus'

Not too healthy
Neeraj Kabi lost so much weight for 'Ship of Theseus' (2012) that he suffered severe health ailments. The film portrayed him as an ailing monk. To be convincing, he had to look lean and emaciated and ended up knocking off almost 17 kgs. This got his team members worried about his physical well-being.

Role play

Hrithik Roshan

>> To get into the skin of his character in 'Guzaarish' (2010), Hrithik Roshan used to move around in his house on a wheelchair as he had to play an ex-magician who was physically challenged.

Ranbir Kapoor

>> Ranbir Kapoor spent nights in A R Rahman’s studio to get to know his 2011 film Rockstar’s songs better. This way, he had greater ownership of the music while being on stage during shoots.

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