Pratik wishes to team up with distinct cinematic voices as he kicks off 2023 with the shoot of Dhulia’s Yash
Prepping for a part can be a process of discovery, as one learns more about the character, his flaws and foibles. Pratik Gandhi swears by it, more so when given a meaty role like that in Tigmanshu Dhulia’s Yash. The crime thriller traces the life of dacoit Shiv Kumar Patel aka Dadua, who was gunned down, along with several gang members, in 2007, in a Special Task Force operation led by then-SSP Amitabh Yash. While Arshad Warsi steps into the role of the dacoit who operated on the borders of Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh, Gandhi plays the cop who ended his reign of terror.
Gandhi, who recently kicked off Yash’s shoot in Uttar Pradesh, says it has been preceded by weeks of prep. “There is a lot of material available online — from news reports to video clips. I read up on all the information I could source on the IPS officer. Before writing the script, Tigmanshu sir also dedicated a lot of time to his research,” says the actor.
Tigmanshu Dhulia and Mani Ratnam
His performance in Scam 1992: The Harshad Mehta Story (2020) showed us that the actor has a knack for immersing himself in his character. As he steps into another real-life character, he says that the idea is not to imitate, but to play the part with conviction. Gandhi is excited about Yash for multiple reasons. “I’ve never done a cop drama before. Also, it gives us an opportunity to tell the story of one of our real-life heroes.” He is only too happy to reunite with Dhulia after The Great Indian Murder (2022). “It gives me a chance to continue my learning experience with him.”
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The year ahead holds promise for the actor, who has Ananth Mahadevan’s biopic on Jyotirao Phule, and Hansal Mehta’s ambitious web series, Gandhi. “It is the biggest project of my career so far,” beams the actor, who wants to explore different genres and work with different filmmakers. On his wish list are Anurag Kashyap, Anurag Basu, and Zoya Akhtar. He adds, “I’ve always admired their work. I’ll be very happy if I get a chance to work with Mani Ratnam sir.”