Rahul Bose has been definitely not a routine 'Bollywood on-screen character' in the wake of making his introduction English August in 1994, an adjustment of Upamanyu Chatterjee's top of the line novel. Proceeding onward from that point, he made his nearness felt in standard Bollywood interestingly when he ran toe to toe with an agonizing Ajay Devgn in Thakshak. From that point forward, he's became well known assuming lead parts in a great deal of unpredictable motion pictures, from Saket Chaudhary's Pyaar Ke Side Effects to Samar Khan's Shaurya which was a change of Aaron Sorkin's A Few Good Men. Bose figured out how to stand his ground before a point-clear hazardous execution by Kay Menon.
Presently, after his abundantly refreshing execution in Zoya Akhtar's Dil Dhadakne Do, Bose has gone up against course to bring the remarkable story of mountain climber Malavath Poorna who moved to the summit of Mount Everest at 13 years old, turning into the most youthful ever to make the move to the most astounding crest on the planet. We addressed him about his sophomore directorial endeavor and his developing decisions as a performer. Here are portions from the discussion with Rahul Bose:
You're getting back to direction after 15 years post Everybody Says I'm Fine. Out of the several stories out there, what drew you to Poorna's story?
The three things that consume me in this world are sport, cinema and social activism. With Poorna, it was perfect because it ticked all the three boxes, where it was cinema obviously, it's adventure sport of the highest kind which is mountaineering, and it is the story of a girl who is poor, an adivasi (tribal) from Telangana, who makes the most astonishing journey from a hut in Telangana to the top of Mt Everest at the tender age of 13. You can't make this kind of a story up. If I had written a Bollywood film like that, people would've said Bollywood exaggerates too much. Why couldn't they make her at least 16 to make it believable? So it was a win, win, win for me in all three categories.
Did it occur to you that the story would require a certain scale of production value, to translate it into a credible film? Did it bother you at first or did you have that sorted?
The short answer is yes. You think I'm a mad man? Or a egotistical maniac to not realise what I was aiming for? This story is a journey story, which starts in Poorna's real hut in Pakala, Telangana where temperatures soar to 50 degrees, and ends at the top of the Everest; the footage we have from the summit is going to blow your socks off. But to answer your question, I had budgeted for everything.
What was that one quality in Aditi you saw which made you choose her to play Poorna?
You can never be sold on an actor who is acting for the first time. It was always going to be a gamble. What I was basically looking for in the girl who would play Poorna was resilience under pressure. Someone who had the terrific empathy, and Aditi definitely had these two. It wasn't an easy audition, I read with her for two hours, and before that we chatted about life, death, about family. I wanted to see if she had the sensitivity and the resilience. And then when we began shooting, if the audition was x in terms of difficulty, the shoot was 50x. She was assailed with difficulties, but I kept on telling her she was doing great. It was only a matter of how great.
Do you think Bollywood has struggled with type-casting you? And probably failed to exploit your potential to the fullest?
Everyone has highs and lows, and it's a cyclical thing. It's not that you suddenly become a bad actor. It's a question of what is in vogue at that moment. There were a set of films which I would call 'Versova Noir' which emerged about a decade ago. So I rode a very long cycle from English August in 1994 to Shaurya in 2009. After that I started making choices which began marginalising me, but I was enjoying those roles. Whether it was Midnight's Children, Before the Rain, then in Dil Dhadakne Do, I liked my character. There is a certain flavour of the season, and there are other actors who are better than you. So what you have to do is chill. How many films of De Niro do you remember? 10? And he's among the greatest actors who lived. So what's the insecurity?
Have you ever craved for lead roles? Was there ever an ambition of becoming a Bollywood star?
I've always craved for lead roles and I've always played them. Barring Dil Dhadakne Do. I want to be the motor of the film. Even in Thakshak, where Ajay (Devgn) was the hero, my character Sunny equally drove the film. The exciting thing is being one of the reasons of why the film exists. Any actor will tell you, we think of ourselves when we're born, and we're still thinking of ourselves in leads even when we die.
Ranbir kapoor recently spoke in an interview about how actors are the most insecure beings…
Ranbir is making a distinction here. Stars are the most insecure beings. Actors are not. Ask any of the good actors like Nawaz (Nawazuddin Siddiqui), Irrfan if they're insecure about their skill-set. Stars are insecure because their fortunes depend on the whims and the fancies of people they don't know. Ask Ranbir if he feels like a lesser actor today because of two flops, and he'll say obviously not.
Are you planning on collaborating with any of the new directors like you did with Zoya? Someone you would chase down to work with?
I don't necessarily chase people down if I want to work with them. But I've often expressed it out loud and repeatedly if I want to work with filmmakers. Be it Ketan Mehta, Sudhir (Mishra), Zoya, Dibakar (Banerjee), even Aparna Sen who I've worked with quite a lot. The problem with us is we don't say it out loud too often, considering ego problems. But I've never held back like that.
What's next on the acting front?
There's a web series that I've been offered, which is a lead role. And I think web series is the future. I believe something like Netflix is gonna open up more avenues in India, there are gonna be more players like that and then eventually after a shake-out, there will be two or three survivors. And the material that I have received has been written in a very sharp style like Dil Dhadakne Do. Obviously, high-speed internet being a prerequisite, this will not be for the masses. It's the right time and I'm just waiting to see who the others are who sign up for it.
Any recent role in Hindi films you saw and thought 'Wow! I wish I'd done this.'
Any of the roles in Ship of Theseus. Maybe a few years down the line, Neeraj Kabi's role. Maybe quite a few years down the line (laughs). But it's such a brilliant film.
Any last thoughts on Poorna?
It's important to know the film is not a climbing film. It's about a young adivasi girl's journey from a hut in Telangana to the summit of the Everest. I want you to feel the awe of the journey, about how incredible the journey has been for her. And what can be accomplished by sheer human spirit.