I’m sincere to myself, says Arshad Warsi

Gurnaaz Kaur

Actor Arshad Warsi will be playing the role of a politician in the upcoming film Durgamati: The Myth, which also stars Bhumi Pednekar, Jisshu Sengupta and Mahie Gill. The actor hopes he has done justice to the character, as it is for the first time he is doing such a role.

“It is a very interesting role; I am this politician who has got skeletons hidden in his closet… There’s a lot more to it, but I can’t reveal it. But one thing I can say is that it’s after a long time I got offered something that excited me so much.” The film is scheduled to stream on Amazon Prime Video on December 11. Happy to have done something new and equally happy about getting a platform to release it, Arshad does, however, wish the film had a big screen release. “Looking at the current situation, we in the film industry are grateful to the OTT platforms but I would still prefer to see a film in the theatre because that’s where you really enjoy a movie.”

For a suspense thriller like Durgamati, with the special effects and sound, he says it needs that powerful technology to work its impact. “Home release does take away a lot from the twists and turns.”

Digital mode

In the film, Bhumi’s character has supernatural elements; adds Arshad, “Bhumi is a very hard-working actor and she doesn’t give up. It’s a tough role for a girl, for that matter anyone, but she has done a brilliant job of it.”

Earlier this year, Arshad was seen in crime-thriller web series Asur, which also marked the actor’s digital debut. Recently, he was nominated for Best Actor in a Leading Role at Asian TV Awards for the show. “I was really worried initially, in fact, quite apprehensive because of what I had heard and then my experience of TV back in the time wasn’t good. But it took me two days of working on this series and I realised how good this new medium was.”

The nomination was a cherry on the cake. “It is nice to be appreciated and acknowledged. After a long time I am being nominated, so I am quite happy about it and more so because this one is for a serious role and not for a comedy.”

Somewhat bored of comedy, Arshad says he needs to do other things too. “Comedy is so profound and people enjoy it so much that everybody wants to do comedy; then guys like me are caught to do the job.”

Being choosy

Up next for him is Akshay Kumar and Kriti Sanon-starrer Bachchan Pandey, which is an action comedy. “We start shooting in January. And I am looking forward to doing some mad things with Akshay. I am 100 per cent sure that we are going to have a blast because Akshay has a terrific sense of humour.”

As for whether he has got his due in the industry, he says, “There’s a part of me to be blamed for it. I don’t do too much work and nobody is going to be waiting for me. I take my breaks; say no to a lot of serious movie offers because I either don’t like the roles or the films… It’s because I am honest to myself. I need to like what I do and very rarely it happens that you hear a script and you just want to do it. I’ve said no to a lot of people and I am sure that a lot of people don’t like me for that.”

His prime goal is to be in a happy space and have enough time for his family. At the risk of sounding like a monk, Arshad explains, “There is no end to what one wants. One has to realise what one needs, what makes one happy and once one achieves that, just slow down. I think that’s what even the pandemic has taught humanity, the need to slow down and relax. I don’t shoot when my kids have holidays; I spend a lot of time with them and Maria.”

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