Sup­port­ing ac­tors kick­ing the clichés away

Hindustan Times (Patna) - Live - - Entertainment - Yashika Mathur yashika. mathur@ hin­dus­tan­times. com

With au­di­ences em­brac­ing fresh scripts and faces, a new wave of artists once known as sup­port­ing ac­tors are mak­ing a mark in Bol­ly­wood. Be it Pappi from Tanu Weds Manu Re­turns (2015), Ajit Ban­er­jee in De­tec­tive By­omkesh Baskhy (2015), Mu­rari from Raan­jh­naa (2013) or Dr Baldev Chadha in Vicky Donor (2012), ‘side­kicks’ don’t just sup­port the lead now, they com­plete the movie.

Writer Hi­man­shu Sharma, whose di­a­logues in Raan­jh­naa earned him a lot of praise, says that as a writer, his fo­cus is to sup­port the story. “There are no roles, only sto­ries. To tell sto­ries, you need char­ac­ters ... some main leads and some sup­port­ing. As a writer, you need to write your story truth­fully, us­ing lead and sup­port cast. I be­lieve ‘sup­port­ing char­ac­ters’ mean sup­port­ing to the ‘story’ not the ‘main leads’,” he says.

Ac­tor Deepak Do­briyal, whose comic tim­ing in Tanu Weds Manu Re­turns was ap­plauded, never treated his char­ac­ter frivolously. “I never had the mind­set that Pappi is Mannu’s side­kick. Pappi is his own char­ac­ter. I give max­i­mum fo­cus to my own char­ac­ter and it clearly shows,” says Deepak.

Trade an­a­lyst Amod Mehra says that con­tent-driven films are bank­able fi­nan­cially as a film is not about just ac­tors any­more. “We’ve be­come more con­tent-based. Ear­lier, we had a hero, a hero­ine, and that’s it. Con­tent-based sto­ries need more char­ac­ters, which play a very im­por­tant role now,” he says. Film­maker Anand L Rai agrees: “It’s cru­cial for me as a film­maker to get good sup­port­ing roles as well. If we get good guys to only do leads, how will I jus­tify a Mu­rari or a Pappi? Film­mak­ers need to tal­ented ac­tors, and we as di­rec­tors have to work hard to etch a good char­ac­ter sketch so they get their share of cre­ative sat­is­fac­tion.”

Ac­tor Ram Kapoor, who’s acted in movies such as Karthik Call­ing Karthik (2010) and Shaadi Ke Side Ef­fects (2014), agrees, but also says that this has not made things eas­ier for artists who want to make it big. “With the scripts that are writ­ten, there is no cen­tral male or fe­male lead but fivesix peo­ple who are main char­ac­ters. I don’t think that’s go­ing to change. Showbiz is still cut throat com­pe­ti­tion as it was be­fore, get­ting work is just as dif­fi­cult now as it was be­fore. And it will al­ways be,” he says.

Ram Kapoor

Anand Ti­vari

Deepak Do­briyal

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