Rahul Bhat, who was last seen in Nayee Padosan, is back after over a decade of hiatus with Anurag Kashyap’s Ugly. In conversation with Koimoi, the actor reveals about his distance from silver screen, why Ugly got him back and future projects.
What kept you away from films for so long and why Ugly made for a comeback?
It was a conscious decision. I was not in the mood of doing films, because I thought that I am giving my hundred percent and people working with me are not giving their hundred percent; so I thought unless and until I don’t find a right person who doesn’t give his hundred percent I am not going to do films. And then suddenly Kashyap came and offered me Ugly.
So, would you say that the long wait is finally justified?
Yes, definitely the wait is justified. Well I would like to think so. And it could not have been better with such a great director, great script, film and getting to play a very complicated, interesting role. So in that way I am very satisfied, let’s see how it turns out to be.
How was the experience having directed by Anurag Kashyap?
Very interesting, he is a great director and is very good with his actors. The reason why Anurag’s actors excel in his films is because he gives them that kind of space to rise above the script.
Now that this has come to you after so long what does Ugly mean to you?
Ugly means very beautiful to me.
In the film you are in search of your kid, in life what was it that you have badly searched for?
We all lose something or the other in life, life is all about lost and found. In life sometimes I am looking for myself.
What is that particular element that you have taken from the character that you have portraed in Ugly?
It was just the frustration of not getting the kind of work I could have got, so that frustration is very evident in this character, because I am playing a struggling actor in the film. Although I never struggled in my life. Earlier when I was just 19, I got Heena which ran for five years on Sony, then I got Yeh Mohabbat Hai, Nayee Padosan and it was a conscious decision to stay at home and then when I wanted to come back, Anurag Kashyap came out of the blue and said you do Ugly. So I have not actually struggle struggled, but I have struggled in a very different way. My struggle is very conscious, me not getting work is very much upto me, because i was sitting home and didn’t go to meet any producers or directors.
So, it was like Anurag came to you with the film?
Yes, we just met and he offered me the script.
So you both knew each other from past?
Yes, long time back when I came to struggle in Mumbai,we stayed in the same locality, so we kind of knew each other.
What are the other projects you are doing and as Ugly has been screened across various international platforms, have you got any offfers from international directors?
I am currently shooting for Sudhir Mishra’s ‘Devdas‘ where I am playing Devdas. We still have a 15 days schedule, which will be shot in Delhi from 7th January. And yes, Bill Bennett – an Australian director has offered me a lead role in his film, but I have to look at the script first and if it excites me I will definitely do it.