Most young actors know better than to underestimate the stiff competition among newcomers in Bollywood.
But one-film-old Sidharth Malhotra remains unfazed.
According to him, there is a while before this new batch of talent — and he includes himself in this list — actually proves itself. That’s why, at the moment, the only artiste he considers competition is Ranbir Kapoor.
As his second film, co-starring Parineeti Chopra, nears release, Sidharth talks to us about the importance of staying in the news, what it takes to survive in the industry and more.
Post your debut, you went underground, while your peers were busy making news for their link-ups etc. Is being in the news important to you?
No, not at all. Would you watch a film because of an actor’s link-up or because the movie looks good? Also, I don’t know if people have link-ups just so they can make news. I am new (to the industry), so I don’t know if there are benefits to these things.
There are so many newcomers in Bollywood today. Who do you consider your competition?
There is no one particular person, but if I had to get down to it, then I would say Ranbir Kapoor. He is the best. He’s a great actor and superb in all the films he’s done. He has these nuances in his performances that none of us have. Among the others (newcomers), it’s very tough to pick one person and call him my competition. We are all one-film-old; we will realise (our standing) only after our second and third films come out.
How important is the second release for a newcomer? Can it make or break careers?
I wouldn’t say it can make or break (careers), as we all have proved that we are here to stay. Having said that, we know that we have to deliver at the box-office. All of us have films ready for release this year, so in that sense, we know we’re sorted for a few years (at least). Right now, we are all standing our ground.
What special plans do you have for your birthday today (January 16)?
I am going to be in Delhi and will celebrate my birthday with my family, after five-six years. Usually, it’s been in Mumbai with friends, or my parents drop by, or I am travelling. But now my extended loud Punjabi family will be playing host and we are all excited. It will be super fun.
How different does your second release, Hasee Toh Phasee (HTP), feel from your debut?
This time, it’s far more exciting as I feel more responsible. But the nervousness and anxiousness is the same. Student Of The Year (SOTY; 2012) was like an entrance exam, and HTP feels like the finals (smiles). You’ve got to prove your mettle.
You are perceived to be a serious guy. Why?
I don’t know why people jump to conclusions or make such judgments. Perhaps due to my first film, people probably think I am a lot like my character. I take time to open up. ‘Reserved’ is the word I would use for myself. Hopefully, post HTP, people will think differently of me.
On Karan Johar’s chat show, you spoke about your ex-girlfriend and your long-distance relationship. Did you get queries about that from people later?
Everyone watches that show and no one missed it. She too called me up and we spoke about it. There were many reactions online as well. There were many jokes and comments. The saving grace on that episode was that I knew who the President of India is (laughs).
Do you agree with Alia’s (Bhatt) comment that Parineeti (Chopra) needs styling tips?
No, I think Parineeti dresses aptly. I think she’s styled according to the character she plays. As for her off screen style, she is pretty cool in the way she dresses. Everyone has their unique style.