Actor Ishwak Singh threw himself in the deepest of waters by agreeing to say yes to an all girl chick flick, wherein his character could at best be described as that of regressive, patriarchal man.
Well, if his name as yet doesn’t ring a bell, the fact that he was the one whom Sonam Kapoor famously called a ‘mother lover’ in Veere Di Wedding, definitely will. And therein lay the brownie points that he loves to dig into. “To get noticed when you play secondary characters is more challenging and hence much more rewarding,” shares the actor who has absolutely no qualms in, “holding the spear several times before he goes onto play Hamlet.”
Which is what the journey of this architect- turned- actor has pretty much been when he started with theatre back in Delhi, the city he was born and brought up in. “Though on the sidelines I had done theatre and acting in school and college, but right after college I joined Asmita Theatre Group.” Which explains how he got his first ever aperture like exposure to Bollywood. When that group features in Sonam Kapoor’s Raanjhanaa.
While he doesn’t even technically call that his first break, but he is happy with the “organic process” with which he got the part. No running around chasing production houses or casting directors. As for the second big film, thanks to Facebook, he instead got called to Mumbai for some audition (which later didn’t materialise) and instead landed up in Mukesh Chabbra’s office. Movies like Tamasha and Aligarh, followed, wherein he had roles as small as significant. “There is no point in being sad and depressed about not getting meatier roles,” shares the actor who believes in turning the tables instead and making the most of any challenge. “Had I said yes to only big roles than the journey would have been very different, though I don’t know what that would have been.”
Bollywood as an outsider
Ever the slow, steady and content with his career graph, he refuses to play the victim card that outsiders often do. “All I can say is that I have no regrets and Bollywood takes care of you. If you are ready to learn and here for the craft that is. If you are chasing fame, then this is likely to be a disappointing industry.”
Any comparisons with Fawad Khan, he feels are “because of fair skin and beard and may be some uncanny resemblance.” He adds, “Any comparisons with anybody good looking and popular can’t hurt right?” There is another league altogether, he’d love to be placed next to someday. The likes of actors with a strong theatre background, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Irrfan Khan, Naseeruddin Shah…The league that chased their craft, and fame followed.
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