Anant is a theatre actor hailing from Delhi, having studied in the city’s Kirori Mal College. He previously appeared in small roles in Pradeep Sarkar’s ‘Mardaani’ and Zafar’s previous release ‘Gunday’. Anant came in limelight with with his role in Sultan Movie. He played Salman Khan’s (Sultan) buddy Govind in the film. He has been at the receiving end of near-universal acclaim from critics as well as audience for his engaging performance.
Sultan movie actor Anant on his big Bollywood break and destiny taking its time. Excerpt from an interaction with Anant.
After playing such influential roles in ‘Mardani’ and ‘Gundey’, what was your instant reaction on knowing about your character in Sultan, the biggest blockbuster of this year?
Anant: This role went through the phase of certain changes gradually. Initially when I was told about the role, where I was supposed to play the part of main lead’s friend, I got a bit conscious and scared about accepting it. The reason was the preconceived notion associated with such kind of characters. Usually we see such roles being uni-dimensional where either the character is used as an unsubstantial element in the movie, and to create light humor. But when Ali came up to me with the crystal clear ideology regarding the movie and the character, I had no option but to say yes. Ultimately I got even more conscious but this time out of the pressure of playing such an important part in the movie, wondering if I could do justice with it in the best possible way.
Looking at the response from the audience towards the movie, it gets obvious that people are appreciating your character immensely. What do you have to say on this note? Do you feel that an actor is known through his character?
Anant: I feel that the real success of an actor can be defined in terms of the appreciations and applauses received by the audience, not only for that particular character in a specific movie rather as an artist wholly. I feel privileged to grab such a substantial role in the very starting of my career.
As far as the link between an actor and the character he is playing is concerned, I opine, it is the character that makes up an actor. A specific role or character in the movies is something that gives identity to an actor.
Undoubtedly the Khan family consisting of Salman Khan, Sharukh Khan and Aamir Khan are the utmost favorite of everyone. Apart from them who do you admire?
Anant: I would name Irfan Khan and Nawazuddin Siddiqui as my current favorites. These two actors possess an exotic potential and talent which I admire personally. Not forgetting to mention the old gems Dilip kumar, Amitabh Bachchan and Sanjeev Kumar from whom I learned a lot.
Irfan Khan’ recent release ‘Madaari’ did not do well on the box office despite of having an exceptionally good plot and story line. Do you believe that Indian audience prefers entertainment over sensible and logical themes?
Anant: Since I haven’t seen ‘Madari’ yet, for the moment I am not the correct person to comment on it. On the question of passing on a verdict addressing the audience’s choice and preference might be unjustified. I have seen movies that have serious and substantial content yet can be categorized as entertaining. So demarcating different movies based on how much they were able to gross, is vague. If it is directed and made appropriately as planned, it would automatically do great business at the box office.
Secondly, every movie in no way can satisfy the audience of every age and group. A movie reaches the zenith of its success if it manages to drag the target audience towards the theatre. No matter what comes, if a film is expressive with the thought it was intended to convey, it will receive acclamation.
From your recent movie ‘Sultan’, which scene captured your heart and soul and thereby becoming your favorite?
Anant: There is a whole sequence where Salman defeats his competitor followed by a warning where he asks him to drop the idea of wrestling and head towards his country.
I fell in love with this scene every time I watched it. As per my perception the whole essence and spirit of the movie has its core lying within this scene. Also the credit needs to be shared with Salman, who brought life to this scene.
Please share some good and funny memories from the sets of this movie while shooting.
Anant: There were lots of moments where we enjoyed to our fullest. Usually it used to be Salman who entertained us even off the camera. He had the habit of being in his character even after the shot was over and making everyone laugh through his witty remarks and utterances. He has got the charm to make anyone and everyone happy.
Tell us about your upcoming projects?
Anant: There are few in the pipe line. As of now I cannot indulge any details, but once the it happens, i will definitely share the details with you.