In perforing arts sometimes an artist with a heavy role fails to capture the audience and sometimes a small role can be noticed and appreciated by the public, that’s why TV, stage or film is completely unpredictable.
I had an opportunity to chat with film artist Anil Charanjeet. He is a new artist in the industry and has played characters alongside big names such as Shahrukh Khan in Raees, Amir Khan in PK alongside the blockbuster of 2017 Golmaal, Sing is Bling with Akhsay Kumar, Haseen tu Phansee with Siddarth Malhotra and in the upcoming movie Sanjay Dutt biobic with Ranbeer Kapoor.
Q: Tell us about your acting career?
Anil: I came from a very small town in Madya Pradesh, I always wanted to be in performing arts or a cricketer but my Dad was against me playing cricket because he is a businessman and he wanted me to join a business or a profession where there would be financial security, so cricket was not accepted by my family. There was only performing arts left where I felt like I could express myself, I was not a brilliant student but good at playing different characters during festival season like Durga Pooja; during those 10 days I was the centre of attraction for people playing characters and that’s how I started.
My Hindi teacher asked me to go to Pune for acting school, at that time I was completely unaware about acting school then I came to know about FTI. I tried for admission, once there was written exam which was fine but I was rejected in the auditioning round. After I did lots of jobs from selling tickets in the theatre or as a sales executive in fitness centre or even as a dancer. I joined Whistling Woods institute and in this period my brother supported me financially, that’s how I started learning about the art. Subhash Gai Ji recognised my talent and he gave me a break in Hello Darling but my major break was Hassen tu Pansee.
Q: How much support do you get from family as you left your fathers business and chose a different career for yourself?
Anil: I was not a good looking guy and my family didn’t have trust in me that I will do something as I was always changing my jobs, so they thought that it is a phase too but I was adamant especially after watching Akshay Kumar film Waqat. I told my Dad that I am going to Pune to study art and then will go to Mumbai and find some work in the industry but my father asked me how much I was going to earn? My mum and my brother supported me during my journey and when my first film released my father bought 50 tickets the balcony was full and he was very proud of me.
Q: What are the challenges and struggles you faced to get into the industry?
Anil: I personally feel that there is no such thing as struggle, you are free to do anything and you are not bound to anything so I can’t say it is my struggle. Just believe in yourself, challenges are there as an actor and you have to work on your character and work internally and externally to look after yourself because it is a world of glamour and you are constantly finding ways to prove yourself. Even big stars are facing challenges to do better than before, even when they achieve their stardom they still work hard.
Q: Have you changed your look?
Anil: Yes, my teeth were completely bad and I was not feeling good about it and have not been confident because of them, since school days I was not smiling because of my teeth. However, I also accepted the way I was such as my height and my voice but I read a book called “How to heal my life” that changed my whole life- it really is a beautiful book. I watch many YouTube videos about stars and how they face struggles in their life so I started working on myself and realised what I can change in myself internally and externally, so I fixed my teeth to be more confident.
Q: Golmaal has been the hit of the year- how do you feel about it?
Anil: I received many good and encouraging messages, Rohit Shetty Sir is happy with my work, even though it is a small character I am happy with the response I am getting. I am feeling really blessed.
Q: How is your experience working with stars like Shahrukh Khan and Amir Khan?
Anil: I had a great experience working with them, they are all very humble and down to earth people, they believe that if everyone performs well then the film will come out good. I was very keen working with them as they have huge experience and for me it was chance to learn from them, however I was very nervous but more then that I was excited to work with all of them.
Q: Future Projects?
Anil: Yes, there are films coming out next year a regional film, Sajay Dutt Biopic and apart of this I am looking forward to doing independent films also character based in lead roles like Nawaz Uddin Siddiqui, Irfan Khan and Raj Kumar Rao are doing.
Anil and I both ended the conversation with agreeing on the following: if you want to be successful in whatever you want to be, you have to go through a process of learning, believing in yourself and learning the craft. There are no short cuts, so have faith and walk on the right path.