Poonam Dhillon’s son Anmol recounts how he bagged lead role in Bhansali’s production Tuesdays and Fridays
He harboured acting ambition from a young age, but Anmol Thakeria had not imagined being launched by Sanjay Leela Bhansali, in his wildest dream. Proud to headline Tuesdays and Fridays with debutante Jhatalekha Malhotra, Thakeria remembers meeting the auteur for the love story.
“I had never met Mr Bhansali before, nor did my parents know him. The agency sent Jhatalekha and me when he was scouting for new faces. He was kind and made a rank newcomer like me feel respected. He had a brief chat with us, after which we sent our audition tapes and dance videos to him,” says the actor. When he did not get a call-back soon after, Thakeria assumed someone else had bagged the part. “Months later, I got a call, saying that he liked us and wanted us to meet the director [Taranveer Singh]. I had suffered an injury while playing football and had undergone had a surgery. So when I met the director, I was on crutches. It’s a surprise things worked out,” he laughs.
Sanjay Leela Bhansali and Poonam Dhillon
The film is releasing at a time when the insider-versus-outsider debate is at its peak. Does he worry about how he will be perceived? “I have never been in the public eye, nor do I get papped. Jhatalekha and Taranveer are outsiders, and we were all given the same opportunity by Mr Bhansali. How I will be perceived is not in my control, but I’ll work hard to earn my place in people’s hearts.”
Though his parents have yet to watch the film, he says mother Poonam Dhillon is ecstatic. “She is proud that I got the film on merit and that someone like Mr Bhansali showed faith in me.”