Actor Rati Agnihotri’s son Tanuj Virwani is making his film debut in Luv U Soniyo, directed by debutant Joe Rajan. “I had met (director) Madhur Bhandarkar a few months back. He recommended my name to Joe, who is a very dear friend of his. That’s what set the ball rolling,” says Tanuj.
The 24-year-old has learnt the ropes of acting at the Kishore Namit Kapoor Acting Institute in Andheri. “I have already acted in five short films and tried my hand at directing and writing scripts. This has helped me understand the intricacies of the medium better,” explains Tanuj, adding that he’s also assisted on two films, Chance Pe Dance (2010) with Shahid Kapoor and Aao Wish Karein (2009) with Aftab Shivdas-ani. “Both movies were part of a learning curve for me. Apart from that, I watch a lot of movies and try to imbibe whatever I can from them,” he reveals.
Luv U Soniyo is a romantic comedy between a Catholic girl and a Punjabi boy, played by Tanuj. So how much of an influence has Agnihotri been in getting her son into films? “I don’t think my mother did, for the simple reason that she quit films after getting married and made a comeback when I was already 16 years old.
In my formative years, she was more of a homemaker rather than an actor or a star. Also, my parents have ensured that I had a non-filmi upbringing. I was a podgy boy with bad skin, glasses and a mushroom haircut, not quite actor material,” adds Tanuj. Luv U Soniyo is slated to release at the end of the year. So what’s next? “I have been getting a fair amount of calls and offers, but I want to keep my cards close to my chest at the moment. I am in no hurry to go on a signing spree. It’s all about quality over quantity,” says Tanuj.