Commercial Bollywood films may be his "bread and butter" but Emraan Hashmi says he is keen to take risks and do projects that scare him as a performer post his "creatively satisfying" turns in 'Shanghai' and Danis Tanovic's upcoming movie Tigers.
Hashmi's performance in the Oscar-winning director's real-life inspired drama has earned him a lot of praise in the international media following its world premiere at the recently concluded Toronto International Film Festival. "I understand that mainstream cinema is very important for me. It's my bread and butter but once a year, I want to do a film like 'Tigers' which excites me and scares me as an actor. Risks are big chaos but if you go down the beaten path it means the death of your art and creativity as an actor," Hashmi told.
The actor, who not long ago was slotted as a serial-kisser, is working hard to avoid getting trapped into a particular image. He now wishes there were more Bollywood stars willing to take such risks. "Before 'Shanghai' I played these urban, cool roles in thrillers. No one expected me to do a 'Shanghai' and this is why I chose that film. Box office is important but sometimes you need films that change things. They are not as much about money as about intent and 'Tigers' is one such film," Emraan said.
"I just hope there are more Bollywood actors who are willing to take risks. Somehow they are always chasing numbers at the box office. The benchmark of success is very different in Bollywood," he added. The actor was happy to see the film receive a standing ovation from the audience at TIFF.
He also met Aamir Raza, the Pakistani Salesman whose life he has portrayed in the movie. "The audience at TIFF were very moved by the film in all positive ways. We got a standing ovation. I also met Aamir. I was very nervous meeting him because playing a real-life character is a huge responsibility but luckily he liked my portrayal. He is the real hero of the film. Taking on a multinational company was courageous on his part," the actor said.