Posted by barkha on July 8, 2011 | No Comments
It is not a coincidence that when Parvin Dabbas associates himself full on with a film, the film is very atypical Bollywood and it also sets the cash registers rolling. How else do you explain the leading man of MONSOON WEDDING and KHOSLA KA GHOSLA. Yet we don’t see him very often on the silver screen. Here we catch up with this classic actor for all ages, as he talks about his work and his upcoming directorial debut.
Over to Parvin:
You are that ideal combination of being trained as much in the West as in the East, does this mean that as the worlds collide, you could also be seen in the West, whether in front or behind the camera?
Thank you for the compliment and of course that always is a possibility as I feel creative people should have no borders, so whether as an actor or director I would love to work in different parts of the globe especially the West since I spent a part of my childhood there and trained as an actor in New York as well.
Two of the most commercially successful, yet very a typical of the run of the mill Bollywood films coming out of India, Monsoon Wedding and Khosla Ka Ghosla are part of your portfolio, how did those two come about and when enacting did it strike you that these two would be as big as they became?
Well funnily enough both of them came through auditions and both auditions were rather strange because I was told about the Monsoon Wedding one last minute and literally ran from the gym in shorts and vest to give the audition. I was surprised when I was called back to meet Mira. As we all know that worked out in my favor. During the auditions of Khosla ka Ghosla, Dibakar (the director) actually spent 3months not wanting to meet me because he thought I was too good looking for the role! His asst director who had worked with me, insisted that he meet me. When he did he rather dryly said I would have to audition to which I said ‘no problem’. He said let’s do it now, I said, ‘do you want it done quick, or done right?’ He said ‘done right’, so i said ‘well i’m going to come tomorrow then ‘, and I proceeded to come the next day and audition and as soon as it was over, Dibakar said ‘I’d like to offer you the role’.
And no, I didn’t think they’d become as big as they did but I always knew they were special because they had a certain fresh factor
Staying with MW and Khosla, given that you were their lead, one has not seen you as much in Hindi cinema as we would like to, how come?
I’m pretty moody and only like to work with people I’m comfortable with and projects that actually interest me. Plus I got stung a couple of times by people who offered me ‘good roles’ and I took them at face value. So I’ve become much more cautious and careful in the roles I choose even if that means not being seen for a while.
Talk to us about your directorial debut?
My directorial debut is called ‘Sahi Dhandhe Galat Bande’ and it’s an action comedy with a political theme. I’ve tried to make an entertaining film while saying something as well….not the kind of film you leave your brains behind for, but bring them to the theatre! It’s got a great mix of an experienced and upcoming cast with people including Anupam Kher, Sharat Saxena, Yashpal Sharma, Kiron Juneja Sippy and Vansh Bharadwaj (Heaven On Earth). I’m very proud with the way it’s turned out and look forward to it’s release Aug 19th.
Now on to the other thing that you are very good at, photography and underwater photography, how did that come about and what does the future hold for that skillset?
I’ve always been interested in photography since the age of 12 when my dad let me use his camera and even when I started modeling and acting, I used to carry my camera around so I could shoot when I had spare time. Underwater photography started when I learnt scuba diving and how to take my camera underwater. I’ve always been amazed by underwater life and being able to take pictures to show what beauty lies beneath was an added incentive. The last year and half though have gone in directing my first film so photography has taken a back seat but will get back to it after the film’s release.