I ran after De Niro’s car in Toronto: Anupam Kher
Early on Friday, Anupam Kher flew off to Philadelphia for five weeks to film David O Russell’s The Silver Linings Playbook. He’s excited to have landed the opportunity to work with reclusive superstar De Niro who he calls the ‘God of all actors’.bollywood Updated: Oct 22, 2011 16:56 IST
Early on Friday, Anupam Kher flew off to Philadelphia for five weeks to film David O Russell’s The Silver Linings Playbook that co-stars Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Chris Tucker, Jackie Weaver and Robert De Niro. He’s excited to have landed the opportunity to work with reclusive superstar De Niro who he calls the ‘God of all actors’.
“Along with Dustin Hoffman and Al Pacino, Robert De Niro changed the concept of acting. I was introduced to him at the National School of Drama through films like Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, New York, Once Upon A Time In America and Godfather 2. Once in Toronto, I almost ran after a car after being told he was in it,” reminisces Anupam. “To think that I will be sharing screen space with him feels incredible.”
The Silver Linings Playbook is about a former teacher, played by Bradley, who after four years in a mental institution, moves back with his mother and tries to reconcile with his ex-wife. De Niro is reportedly enacting the role of Bradley’s father while Kher plays a shrink.
Quiz him on this, and Anupam points out he is bound by a contract and cannot divulge details about his role, but admits it’s a significant one. “What’s really heartening is that it’s not an English film about Indian people like City Of Joy, Slumdog Millionaire or even Bend It Like Beckham. It’s an American movie about Americans and yet you’ll be proud to see an Indian in it,” he asserts.
Russel’s earlier film, The Fighter, was nominated for seven Oscars. Anupam describes it as an “amazing film” and Russel as an “actor’s director”.
The 55-year-old National Award winner acknowledges that The Silver Linings Playbook will be one of the turning points in his career and offer him a chance to reinvent himself as a person and an actor too.
“I’ll come back a richer person and bring the knowledge back with me to share with students of my acting school,” he points out.
He was recently seen in Akshay Kumar’s first international co-production Speedy Singhs but insists that it wasn’t this project that got him Russsel’s movie. “They were looking for an Indian actor, and I got a call to come and audition. I’m sure so did several others and my bagging the role over them doesn’t make them lesser actors. I probably fit the part better” reasons Anupam who landed the role 10 days ago.
Will his big break open doors to a Hollywood career the way Slumdog Millionaire did for Anil Kapoor? “I’m open to Hollywood films but my bread and jam is in Bollywood. I’m looking forward to returning home and starting work on David Dhawan’s Chashme Buddoor. I heard the final script, it’s terrific. The original is still remembered for the simplicity of its romance,” says Anupam, adding, “It was the heartbreaking, not body-jarring kind. This one has a modern look and yet retains the traditional feel. I’m playing a triple role.”