Manoj Bajpayee: Acting is tough, but seen as a cakewalk in India

Updated: Feb 06, 2018, 13:17 IST | Agencies

Manoj Bajpayee considers it unfortunate that acting is considered the easiest profession in India

Manoj Bajpayee
Manoj Bajpayee

Manoj Bajpayee considers it unfortunate that acting is considered the easiest profession in India. In the upcoming film Aiyaary, the actor is seen in many disguises. He says it may look glamorous and fun, but getting into the prosthetics is a tedious process. "Prosthetics is physically torturous. It is mentally exhausting. Only a mad guy can afford to go through that [pain] again and again. We, actors, are known as loonies. To go through somebody else's pain and feel that misery for months is not easy. That is why I always say acting is the most difficult thing in the world, but sadly in our country, it is seen as a cakewalk," Bajpayee said.

According to him, this notion has developed because commercial cinema does not focus as much on building a character, instead focussing on glamour. "It is in independent cinema where we get to be a part of the real stories and characters. Those kind of performances are heavy." Bajpayee has had great mentors, beginning with theatre stalwart Barry John, who showed faith in him even though he was rejected by the National School of Drama twice.

"When I was in Mumbai, I was running pillar-to-post for work, losing out on projects one after the other. I was dejected. Then I found Mahesh Bhatt. Then Ram Gopal Varma gave me an opportunity of a lifetime in Satya [1998]. It feels great when people think you are unique, it works like a magic potion for the person who is looking for work." After going through a lot of struggle, the 48-year-old actor understands what it means to a newcomer to have an experienced person show conviction in his work.

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