‘Thanks To My Father, I Re­spect My Craft’

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - Brunch - - BREAKFAST OF CHAMPIONS -

On Father’s Day, Ra­man Raghav star Vicky Kaushal talks about his father, Bol­ly­wood ac­tion direc­tor Sham Kaushal, and the lat­ter’s in­flu­ence on his life and work

My father is a self-made man. And he taught me how to be a self-made man. He’s the in­spi­ra­tion for my life. Peo­ple are sur­prised to know I’m his son at all. I au­di­tioned for Masaan like any other young ac­tor look­ing for a break. Even though my father is an ac­tion direc­tor, and has won the most Film­fare awards in that cat­e­gory, I was never an ‘in­dus­try’ kid. I was never ex­cited about go­ing on a film’s set and meet­ing he­roes. I just en­joyed study­ing, play­ing cricket and watch­ing movies.

He comes from a small vil­lage in Pun­jab where he started learn­ing his ABCDs only in the 6th stan­dard. And then he topped his

MA in English lit­er­a­ture at Pan­jab Univer­sity. With­out fi­nan­cial sup­port, he couldn’t live his dream to be a lec­turer, so he came to Bom­bay and worked as a sales­man, earn­ing ₹350 a month.

Destiny took him to films. He some­how got in touch with some stunt­men and be­came one him­self. He did this for eight years be­fore be­com­ing an ac­tion direc­tor with Nana Patekar’s Pra­haar in 1990. That’s been his jour­ney. He’s lived with the idea of giv­ing his 100 per­cent.

Thanks to him, I’ve al­ways lived with the idea of con­cen­trat­ing on the present. My dad never wor­ried about how I was far­ing in aca­demics and what I wanted to do next. Even when I com­pleted my en­gi­neer­ing de­gree and then told him I wanted to act, he was very happy.

But I got my role in Masaan by my­self, with­out his in­flu­ence. The only in­flu­ence I can say he’s used with me is to show me how to be a good hu­man be­ing. He’s al­ways taught me to re­spect peo­ple. He told me: ‘It’s okay if you’re just an eight on tal­ent and a 10 as a hu­man be­ing, be­cause that will take you a longer way.’

Thanks to my father, I re­spect my craft, I love my work and all I want is to be a self­made man just like him.

– As told to Yatharth Chauhan


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