Former superstar Bhagyashree's son Abhimanyu opens up on his debut film winning big at Toronto Film Festival and following in mom's footsteps
Abhimanyu Dassani with mother Bhagyashree. Pic/Instagram
"Our hard work has paid off," says debutant actor Abhimanyu Dassani, whose maiden venture, Mard Ko Dard Nahi Hota, won the Grolsch People's Choice Midnight Madness Award at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) on Sunday.
Directed by Vasan Bala, the action comedy revolves around a man who suffers from congenital insensitivity to pain and uses this to his advantage to hunt down criminals. Dassani is aware that his choice of debut film is at odds with that of other star kids who get launched with big-ticket entertainers.
Not to mention, his mother Bhagyashree who made her debut in the mainstream offering, Maine Pyar Kiya (1989). But the youngster insists he was "completely sold" on Bala's vision.
In his first interview, Dassani says, "This win encourages me to be at the top of my game and work harder. I was offered films from bigger banners, but when I met Vasan sir, I was sold. I put myself in the right hands."
Attending the prestigious festival that sees the brightest creative minds come together has been a learning experience for the actor. "Watching movies all day with the people who came here is educational. My thoughts and ideas found a wider horizon. The first screening of our film felt surreal — there were 1,200 people, but the ambience had the feel of Chandan cinema. People were hooting and clapping. We got a standing ovation," he says, of the Ronnie Screwvala production that also features Radhika Madan.
A still from Maine Pyar Kiya
Geared up to join a business school for a career in investment banking, Dassani had a change of heart after he spent a summer in the US. He soon enrolled in a film school — a move that Bhagyashree didn't approve of. As he follows in her footsteps, the youngster says, "Even after three decades, people love her and the film so much. I hope to achieve a fraction of what she has achieved. It will be fulfilling when she is referred to as Abhimanyu's mom."