I saw you last week at a multiplex… on the screen. Is all well?
I sincerely hope this letter finds you in the pink of health as the same attends me over here! (This is how we were taught to write letters in school!!)
Anyway, jokes apart, I hope you receive this missive in the spirit with which it is meant to be.
I'm surprised that even after 15 years of being in the industry (you tweeted about completing 15 years a few months ago) you still find yourself at the starting blocks. You've have had moderate success on screen, and success [the way the industry sees it], seems to be eluding you. Box-Office figures and distribution mandates both tell that AB's Baby is not too hot as of the moment.
But don't worry; it only takes a hit to change that. But that hit will come only if you pick up the right scripts. Considering the connections you have, I fail to understand why you are not getting that ‘IT' role. You have proved time that given a good role, you are capable of shining.
You did that in your debut film, REFUGEE. There was that spark. That hunger. That desire to excel. This came across strongly in YUVA and GURU. DHOOM too, saw a snazzier side of you.
I was super impressed by your portrayal of Dhirubhai Ambani in that Mani Ratnam flick. You too were gung-ho that you received such an important role so very early in your career (2007). It's over eight years since GURU, public memory is fickle. Oh yes, there was PAA too (2009). How can I forget that? But of late, the less said about your performances, the better.
I know you will say HAPPY NEW YEAR grossed Rs 100 cr. But is that success? Is that a barometer for good performance? I mean… Think hard.
I remember reading somewhere Sushmita Sen saying that you are a “Lambi race ka Ghoda.” It's 15 years now. Newer actors have entered the scene. Competition is getting fiercer. Box-Office figures are identifying with the stars that need to be worked with. Relationships are now taking a backseat, what with auditions and a proper casting process being followed by most banners. Lesser known actors, who would have otherwise been sidelined, are getting their due. And that's good news for the industry.
Look at Nawazuddin Siddiqui. He has barged forth with a pent-up desire to excel in every scene, in every movie. Doesn't matter if the script is weak; he ensures that with his sincerity and talent, he makes a clean cut. He proved that recently in MANJHI-THE MOUNTAIN MAN.
You too can scale that mountain, Man! You have the best of both genes; Guddi and Vijay Dinanath Chauhan, eh! Just get that hunger; that spark; that desire to excel which you showed in your debut film, and in GURU.
Trust me, if you do that, all will be well!
God Bless You.
(This weekly column tries to be as honest as honest can be…)
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