Breaking into Bollywood: First Film Shoot!

Danny Sura , 15 Mar 2012
Posing as Bruce Lee!

Hello mateys, how are you all? Hope you’ve recovered from Holi by now… Or, was it just me who was knocked out for 18 hours straight after a not-too-strong bhaang? But here I am now to share experiences of my very first movie shoot (!!!), a Sudhir Mishra-film titled Inkaar, starring Arjun Rampal and Chitrangada Singh.

Playing daku!

Remember how I told you that instead of standing for hours in the queue to enter the audition hall, some quick-thinking chaps wander into other auditions and come back once the queue gets shorter? Well, on one blistering Sunday I decided to be like them and… landed myself a film role! I showed up for a Listerine commercial audition and seeing the size of the queue, I worked out that it’d take at least 3 hours for my turn to come. In the queue I found myself between a guy who was sweating by buckets and a model doing all that she could to not perspire. I was actually dreading having to spend all that time sandwiched like that… Then divine intervention or what, I heard whispers around, “Sudhir Mishra ki film ki casting ho rahi hai.” I further heard: “Sirf short-listed actors ko bulaaya hai audition pe…” But the gang of people outside still ventured further down the alleyway to where the film audition was happening, and I decided to follow them, too.

Any resemblance…?

There was quite a crowd gathered in the little waiting room shack where the film audition was taking place. The casting director came out to tell everyone to go away, which most of them paid heed to and actually walked out! But the obstinate me decided to stick around, that too right at the front. Time went by and more people on hearing news of this audition came to try their luck. The casting director came out again, asked people to leave, and then… came up to me! “You’re actually very good looking,” she said to me, “You look like Imran Khan…” “Imran Khan the actor?” I asked. “No, Imran Khan the Pakistani cricketer,” she clarified. Then with a straight face I said, “Madam, that is because I am his bastard son and he is my illegitimate father!” She looked as if she had just seen a ghost; her mouth wide open in shock. Then with a hearty laugh I said, “I am only joking,” to which she burst out laughing. She asked if I could do a French accent, which I blagged I could. And the next thing I knew I was in the audition room doing a scene that involved me in an inebriated state flirting with a woman in a French accent:

“Ahhhh madame, where is your bindi? But Indian girls look sexy with a bindi, so where is yours? Ahhhhh madame, what does a bindi mean? Why do you wear a bindi?”

After a couple of weeks I was offered the role – which I grabbed with both hands!

…with Arjun Rampal

I was contracted to do 2 days of shooting but ended up doing an extra day as some more scenes were added on (is it a good sign…?). It was only when I got to the set on the first day I realized that the main leads of the film were Arjun Rampal and Chitrangada Singh! The drunk scene that I auditioned for was actually going to be with Chitrangada herself ‒ and boy did I have fun filming it! Alas, I don’t have it captured on my vlog. When the cameras were rolling it was hard to film the stars themselves. Shoving my iPod in front of their faces would have been quite rude and I don’t think that the director would have been none too impressed either.

So that was my first taste of working on a film. As great the experience was, this small role is not my aim. I want to be the hero, the star! Yes, I may have an accent when I speak Hindi, I may not have the 6 pack ‒ but I got faith that I will succeed, that too without compromising on my values and beliefs. As always, people, send me your positive energy and love, and watch out for moi in Inkaar (it’s in post-production now, SO, soon, very soon…)!

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