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Sharman Joshi on <i>Rang De Basanti</i>

Courtesy: IndiaFM

The much-appreciated Godmother marked his entry into filmdom. After that Sharman Joshi was part of some forgettable flicks like Style and Excuse Me. However, his acting skills didn't go unnoticed. So much so, that even Rakeysh Mehra spotted a spark in him, and cast him in the ambitious Rang De Basanti. It's been a long journey for Sharman, but it has finally paid off...

How has the journey been from Godmother to Rang De Basanti?
Essentially it's been a journey of patience, to do the work you get excited about. I may have not done too many films but the way it has been, has been more fulfilling as an actor. There has been some maturity. All that adds to the overall actor that you eventually become.

Tell us about Rang De Basanti.
It is very special and something I am very proud of. I hope that the audience feels the same way.

What about your role in the film?
I play a character named Sukhwinder (Sukhi). He's a boy from a small town in Haryana who has moved on to Delhi University for further studies, against his parents wishes. He meets this bunch of friends and the story moves on. The character is largely fun loving. He has his heart on his sleeve and no issues with anyone or even himself. He's living life to the fullest.

How did Rakeysh Mehra approach you for the role?
I just went and met him. It was a meeting that lasted for a long time. Finally, I was called in for an audition for the film. I gave the audition and got through. That's how I landed the role!

There are a lot of other youngsters in this film. Do you feel that you'll get overshadowed by any of them or even by Aamir?
I don't see it that way. In the sense, I just look at the work on hand and how well can I do it. I see how well can I contribute to the character and so to the film. The larger picture is the film. Of course, it is important that I do my job really well. It won't work if I start thinking about what the others are doing and whether I'll be overshadowed. My job is to do my part as well as I can do, so that it can complement the film as beautifully as it can.

How is Rakeysh Mehra as a director?
Mr. Mehra is very special. I have had a great time working with him. I don't know about the brief given to the other actors, but I can tell you about myself. Whatever the scene was, we would have discussions, but the bottom line was 'Let's have fun.' I think that is very important. You have to have certain mechanics to approach a scene. But when the camera actually rolls, you have to be free spirited, so the scene comes alive. I sometimes tend to get too technical as a result of which I might lose the live wire quality to the scene. So when after every brief, Rakeysh told me to have fun, it geared me up.

How was it to share screen space with Aamir Khan?
It was an absolute honor. One can only dream of getting such an opportunity. Since he is such a great actor, one tends to get in awe of him. Thankfully, we had workshops before we started shooting. So the nervous tension was taken care of. Aamir is a man of humility. Aamir creates such an atmosphere that you can just be yourself. And its not like he just makes the actors comfortable. Even the technicians and crew members can be themselves. All in all, it was a great experience working with him.

He is said to be a perfectionist. Was he interfering at all?
That's a huge misconception about him. I don't know where it comes from. It's a little scary how the media can paint a completely different picture of you, when actually you're someone completely different. Of course, everyone wants to do his or her work in the best possible way. But as far has interference goes, not once has he crossed the line and made me feel uncomfortable as a co-performer. I can count on my finger tips. There are a couple of times when he gave suggestions and that too with complete care, so as to not get me off my grounds. We knew there would be no issues if we didn't take it up. There is an absolute misconception about him.

Tell us about your co-stars.
The day I met all of them including Siddharth, Kunal, Atul, Alice and Soha, I knew that I would get along with them. I was proven right. Before the shooting even started, we all knew each other so well. For a film like this, which is about friends, it is important to know the person, beneath the characters also. The chemistry emerges naturally. It has been a sheer pleasure to work with each and everyone of them.

This film was supposed to release last week. It got postponed due to certain reasons. Do you think that will bring down the prospects of the film?
I don't know about that because I'm an actor. All this is technical stuff. But honestly, I don't think so. The producers and distributors will be able to answer this question, best. But my gut feeling as a common man is that a week's difference will not really make a difference.

What is your comment on the music of the film?
It is so appropriate for the film and is perfect for the mood. It is in sync with the script and at the same time, is getting popular. It's the best of both the worlds. My personal favorites are Rang De Basanti and Ru Ba Ru and Paathshaala.

The script seems good, the music is doing well and you have a great chemistry with the co-actors. What on the whole is the USP?
The core of the film is friendship. So I think in this case it would be the natural chemistry that emerged among the actors. I think it will being the script alive and hopefully set the screen on fire!

What are your future projects?
There is a film called Golmaal directed by Rohit Shetty which is on floors right now. The songs are left to shoot. That should release by August. It stars Ajay Devgan, Arshar Warsi, Tusshar Kapoor, Paresh Rawal and Rimmi Sen.

What about The Bachelor?
I think the producer would be the best person to answer that. The film is ready but I believe that he is having some problems with the marketing.

With Valentines Day coming up, tell us, which is your most memorable Valentines memory?
My most memorable Valentine's Day was the second year of courtship with my wife. We were seeing each other for eight years before we got married. In the second year, I had made some big plans for Valentines! I had decked up the entire car with balloons and confetti! We drove down to Madh Island. I had carried a picnic table with me. We had set is up on the beach in the night. There was good food and wine! I lit candles but they could not be lit up because of the wind. So I set up a bonfire!

What are your plans this year?
It's too early to say! I'll take it as it comes.

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