He is the recipient of two National Film Awards and four Filmfare Awards. A very successful individual and well-known for his famous role of Bhiku Mhatre in the film Satya. People love him for his acting and great performances in the film industry spanning a career of more than 2 decades. He is the one and only Manoj Bajpayee.
In an interview with Cinespeaks, actor Manoj Bajpayee speaks to us on his success for recent films.
Q: Did you expect such a great response to the film Satyameva Jayate?
Manoj: Milap Zaveri had a lot of expectation. Milap Zaveri our director has been a successful writer of many films. He has a lot of faith in commercial films. With that faith he wrote this film and presented the story to us and also made the film with the same faith. The entire credit for the success of the film goes to Milap Zaveri
Q: After a career span of 25 years how much does success mean to you?
Manoj: Success has always been there however I have always maintained one thing and that to keep doing good films regardless of success or failure. I have never been disappointed in case any of my films have not been released successfully. I believe in doing my job with consistency and do it right and things are falling into place. I believe in not giving up and keep pushing forward.
Q: Did you have any doubts while signing up for a film with 2 new commercial directors Ahmed Khan and Milaap Zhaveri who didn’t have much success in the 1st films?
Manoj: I don’t doubt the capability of the director. If Ahmed is saying his last film was not a success and he wants to me to support him in his new film then for a friend I am always ready. I did Ahmed’s film Baaghi to support him. If the last film directed by Milap Zaveri did not work then he does not become a bad director. A director needs just one successful film to move ahead. The script that Milap Zaveri wrote was a winning script.
Q: Did you develop this attitude of not judging anyone by their success from the film industry in the last 25 years?
Manoj: More than the industry in the last 25 years I have learned from life itself. Live is very important. Any person is unsuccessful only till the time he is not successful. Always look at what is being offered because everything is hidden inside that what is being offered to you. The moment I got the offer for Satyameva Jayate and listened to the script I was confident it will be a great success.
Q: Did have any doubts about a clash at the box office with another film while releasing of the film along with the film Gold?
Manoj: I believe we have a huge population in our country India. People here watch a lot of films. Also we have fewer theatres as well. Clashes are unavoidable. We make a lot of films and a lot of people are watching films and there are fewer theatres then a clash is inevitable. One cannot ignore that and should not feel bad about it as it is a part of the business.
Q: Any reason why the role you are doing in Gali Guleiyan is the most challenging one till now?
Manoj: The role is of a psychologically disturbed person. He keeps hearing the voice of a child crying who is being beaten by his father. In the entire film this man is trying to save the child. It is very difficult to prepare for the role of a psychologically disturbed person. These kind of roles are unique and there is a different technique to prepare for these roles. Every day you have struggle psychologically and mentally and emotionally every day.
Q: Do you want to maintain a balance in doing commercial films and regular films?
Manoj: Not exactly a balance. I did Baaghi for Ahmed Khan and it was a hit. Satyameva Jayate with Nikhil Advani whom I know for good no of years. I listened to the script for Baaghi and at the same time I worried about the delay in working with Nikhil Advani. Out of friendship I did both films andboth were successful. I feel it’s time to try both together.
Q: What is the difference between films being hit in commercial and independent cinema?
Manoj: There is no difference. In the end we just want viewers to love and accept us. Independent cinemas have limited releases and limited audiences go for it and distributors are not very confident in the same. We have been trying hard to give space to the independent cinema for a long time. I feel very delighted to be a part of independent films. I don’t have any complaints about commercial films and I use the success I receive to make independent films. As an actor both commercial and independent cinemas are important to me.
Q: Do you enjoy acting in the roles of a villain or a hero?
Manoj: I am an actor and I love acting. The role does not matter as long as it is a good role. I love doing the role of Gajendar Singh in Tevar. In Love Sonia I have a negative role. Doing the role I had to face a great deal of difficulty. At the same time I enjoyed the role of DCP Shivansh Rathod in Satyameva Jayate. I enjoyed the role of Colonel Abhay Singh the most in my entire career till now and I am sure when I die a lot of people will remember me for my role of Khuddoos in Gali Guleiyan