Actor Manoj Bajpayee is known for his acting histrionics. Two times National Award winner as an actor, Manoj is a very happy man because once again his film ‘1971‘ has won another National Award for the best feature film. Acid Factory, a multi starrer is his forthcoming project. We catch up with him on his character in Acid Factory and more…
How did you got the role in Acid Factory and what is your character all about?
I was not working in any film for long time and had taken a break when Acid Factory happened to me. It was post Das Kahaniya, when I had clean shaven my head. I had met Sanjay Gupta somewhere and he told me that he liked my new look and also told me he wants my same look for his next script. Then he came for dinner at my place and asked me to go through the script. Once I went through it, I realised that as an actor I had something new to do. I’m playing the character of a police inspector. He is loyal to his people, has few memories, sometimes he is emotional, sometime funny. He is also angry-aggressive. He is unpredictable too; you never know how he is going to react.
Sanjay Gupta is always known as a friend of friends, what is you personal experience with him?
Sanjay Gupta is our family friend who would never need any invite to come to my place. Some time he just calls and says, “I want to eat this. Keep it ready, I’m coming for lunch or dinner.” And yes, he is a friend’s friend and a very good person. We get along very well and enjoy each other’s company.
Tell us something about Acid factory. In promos we see some resemblance to Kaante?
Acid factory is Sanjay Gupta kind of film, characters are fascinating, and techniques used for shoot are very good. Since each maker has a distinct signature style, it is visible in all their films. Same is with Sanjay too. But the story has it own uniqueness. The whole film is shot in one factory and it has so many stars.
For that director Suparn and Sanjay have worked very hard so that each gets their due. And no, it is not Kaante. Designing of sets and costumes has been quite challenging for them. It’s a very gripping film but no question of resemblance to anything.
We have rehearsed for the film. Sahil, the cinematographer, is USP of the film, as his camera work is totally fresh and new, nicely shot. Every department was interestingly working and involvement of people from director, actor to spot boy was complete. It shows in the film.
Can you share some of your shooting experience with us?
Whole shooting of the movie was done at Ramoojirao film city, and to reach there from Hyderabad city, all 5-6 actors had to daily travel for 2 hours. Sanjay Gupta is friend for all, so every day he used to throw a party. We would party till 12.30, and then will go for sleep and it was essential for everybody to attend the party. If by chance anyone missed, then he would have to listen to a dressing down from the director. But it was fun.
Aftab, Dino, Irrfan, Fardeen all used to join the party after they were done with gym. But I and director Suparn, we would sit and discuss the next day’s scenes, do additions and deletions before we could join in. and everyday, we were called workaholics and given nasty names for reaching late.
From all of you only Irrfan gets the heroine in the film. Did you ever feel jealous?
We are 5-6 actors but we have only one female with us, that is Dia Mirza and she is starring opposite Irrfan Khan. Naturally all the other guys were damn jealous of him. Why is he only getting the lady? So we would all pass comments at that. But I got the consolation prize because my wife Shabana is doing special appearance in the film. So I’m quiet happy.
Starting from Satya to Swami how do you see you journey has been? Did you feel that this industry has been able to utilize your acting abilities?
If you look my filmography Satya, Shool, Kaun, Aks all my movies have been very different from one to another and in Acid Factory too, I tried to do the same thing. I have tried to be totally different. Look wise, performance wise, character wise and good time wise also.
Fact is Suparn has given us lots of chance and scope to play our characters and he is also open to ideas and suggestions. As far as my career is concerned, I find myself blessed because I have had lots of quality and good movies with good directors and it’s going on nicely on personal and professional front. Still as an actor, I am looking for more and more different role, big role, nice production and everything else that any actor would like to have.
What is your dream role?
My dream role is to play Devdas but no such luck as SRK has already done the classic Devdas and latest Abhay Deol has played the contemporary Devdas.