Now that Housefull has got some good acclaim coming for it, Arjun Rampal is back on the scene close to two years after the release of Rock On. He is also looking forward to the release of Raajneeti this June where he has a pivotal role to play. However, there was a time, till before the release of Don - The Chase Begins Again, when he didn't really have much going for him. He was being called names and there wasn't much impetus in his career.
"Well, as for people calling me names then, well it is a trait amongst many out there who like to mock others when they are down and out. All I could afford to do amidst such talks was stick to what I knew best and work harder", says Arjun, "Thankfully, I got an opportunity to learn from a lot of people even though I didn't have people from the industry who were there to advise me. "
He admits though that he was trying too hard, so much so that he indeed missed out on moments where he could afford to be original.
"That's true; I was trying to prove to too many people and I should not have done that. If at all there was anyone to whom I needed to do that, it should have been me. Sometimes there have been films of mine that haven't worked but I don't regret that because some of them did help me to learn a lot", says Arjun, "Like for example The Last Lear which was not a big commercial success. But then what also cannot be ignored is the fact that performances were critically acclaimed. The film also taught me a lot; especially the way I did scenes with Mr. Bachchan. Now these are the kind of things that you take home."
For someone who is quite serious about cherishing moments spent during the making of the film, he did get into a different zone for Housefull. The film was not only designed as a complete full-on entertainer, Arjun's character was also the only one in the film which was relatively serious and belonged to the no-nonsense world.
Laughs Arjun, "Housefull was for sure a very different kind of experience. Both Sajid (Khan) and I are cricket freaks and that is how we became friends. Then of course I did Om Shanti Om with his sister Farah and he really liked me there. He saw something special and told me that he wanted to do good work with me. I was of course game for it."
Now that Raajneeti is next in line, a career which has stabilised over last three years and a National Award under his belt, what is it that Arjun Rampal aspires in future? Is there any guideline that he has defined for himself, now that audience's expectation would be far more from him in his future outings?
"My funda of selecting a film is simple. Whenever I choose a film, the question that I ask myself is - 'Would I go into a theatre to watch a movie like this instead of buying a DVD?' If the answer is 'yes' then I am game for it", smiles Arjun, "Only after I am convinced with the subject do I look at other aspects that go into a particular film. I can proudly say that I was very convinced in a similar manner for Housefull, Raajneeti and after that remake of Stepmom. I strongly felt that even if I wasn't a part of them, I would have still gone and watched them in the theaters."