Rajniesh Duggall may not have had a successful stint in Bollywood but the actor believes that 'failure is the stepping step to success' and says that he is here to stay.
In a candid chat with Filmibeat, the handsome hunk opens up about his failures, his upcoming movie Saansein, why he has no qualms about doing more horror films and lot more.
Excerpts from the interview..
Q. Tell us something about your role in Saansein
A. Saansein is a romantic film. I play an entrepreneur named Abhay who comes to Mauritius. He is an orphan and a self-made guy. There is a void in his life since he has no one there for him. When he lands in Mauritius he sees this girl and falls in love with her. But then he finds that there is a lot going on in her life. There is an effect of the spirit world on her. So, he decides that he needs to get her out of this situation. He ultimately becomes her knight in the armour for this damsel in distress.
Q. What was it about your character that drew you towards the film?
A. I have chosen to do a horror film after like seven years whereas I am being offered horror films almost every three months. But Saansein was something different and interesting than the others. I would even say that it's slightly better than 1920 at the script level and the way my role has shaped up.
I loved my action sequences in the film. We have done about five to six action scenes out of which one is an underwater sequence. It was very challenging. I play a very layered character in the film.
Q. 1920 was a box office success. Now that you are returning to this genre after a long gap, do you expect a similar reaction for this film too?
A. I think that Saansein is a very nicely made film. We hope that it does even better than my debut film. 1920 is still one of the most popular films which keeps telecasting on television. We hope that Saansein too does well because it has all the ingredients- music, good story and good performances.
In fact, this film's pre-climax and climax is at par or maybe even better than 1920. So, this has the capacity of becoming a big film. The rest of things depend of the audience.
Q. You have had a dry spell at the box office with your last few films. So how do you view these failures? Do they affect you?
A. Obviously, it does affect you because it's like your baby. You are giving it your cent percent. But then at the end of the day you have to realize that film-making is actually a director's vision. You may give it your best shot when it comes to acting but later it all depends on the director what kind of camera angles he uses, the editing, the sound...these things are not in your hands.
What is in our hands as an actor is to give our best performance and to promote it to the best level. But then you only promote a film when you believe in your product. I didn't promote Beiimaan Love much. The film was to release before but there was a lot of shifting of the dates. Eventually I told them to show me the film and I figured out that there was something wrong in the second half of the film. So there was a major 'lochaa' there.
But then as an actor, touchwood, I think people have written fine about my performance. Overall I felt bad that the film didn't do well despite of having some good songs and chemistry.
Q. Were you not aware of these flaws when you signed the film?
A. See when you sign a film you are told a lot of things...that happens with every film. I would say that Saansein and Wajah Tum Ho have turned up a lot more better than what was written on the paper. We have good songs and great cast in both the films. So I am now just keeping my fingers crossed.
Q. So have you become more conscious now when it comes to choosing films?
A. I am. Initially after doing films which failed to do well, I have become conscious. But I think those mistakes also teach you a lot. At least I learnt a lot from them. You realize what all people can promise you but later fail to deliver. I don't have a godfather in the industry. So, whatever I know today I have learnt it on my own. I feel it's getting better.
Q. Your contemporaries are seen doing one or two films a year whereas you have had a total of five releases this year. So is it some sort of strategy?
A. I feel as an actor I can do quite a number of films. As long as you do justice to it there's no harm in it.
Q. You have played characters with grey shades in the past and people have loved you. How do you pull off such roles?
A. I like playing such roles. Everyone has a darker side to them. It's just that you need to tap it. It's like feeding your inner 'Raavan'.
Q. Any genre that you wish to explore in the future?
A. I want to do more love stories. Every time I try to do one, people add thriller and horror to it (laughs). I would also love to do a patriotic film where I am playing the member of the armed forces. I would also like to do something related to sports. I would love to do a Dhoni or a Bhaag Milkha Bhaag. Those are the times when you want to do one film at a time because you couldn't or cannot do more than that.
Q. Biopics are the current flavour of the year. Would you like to do one?
A. Yes. It depends on the producer and the director.
Q. Any person whose life you would like to depict on screen?
A. I think there is a film going to be made to do 1983 World Cup. I would love to do that but how, obviously, that needs to be figured. In my college days my friends used to call me Wasim bhai so I could play Wasim Akram's role. But right now that's not possible because of the ongoing Indo-Pak tension. I support the ban on the Pakistani artistes for the time being till things don't get better.
Q. Any actor you would love to share screen space with?
A. I would love to share screen space with Amitabh Bachchan Sir. Besides that, frankly while doing films I am not bothered about who is my co-star. Rather it's more like which director I am working with.
Q. What's next for you after Saansein and Wajah Tum Ho?
A. I already have something for 2017. At the moment, I cannot reveal much about it. I am dabbling both in films and TV next year. You will be shocked to know that a lot of people want me to do more horror films.
Q. But don't you think that could get you stereotyped?
A. I don't think so. For every actor at the end of the day, if people call you by whatever your last successful film then that's okay. Emraan Hashmi at a time was a serial kisser or Shah Rukh Khan is still known for his lover boy roles. Of course, you need to keep experimenting in between.
Q. How do you view the concept of box office numbers?
A. I think it's very important. At the end of the day we are not doing films just to see it on DVDs or for people to download and see. You need money to make films. That's how the film industry works.