Jatin aka Bunty Grewal came to be noticed on the ramp after being adjudged the first runner-up in the 1998 Gladrags Manhunt. Being the face of brands that include Palmolive, Kamasutra, Raymond, Thums-Up, Cinthol and Levi’s added to the Punjabi model’s profile, after which he was spotted in music videos for singers such as Nazia Hassan, Pankaj Udhas, Jagjit Singh, Ila Arun and Roop Kumar Rathod. Experiencing a good run in the initial years, Nainital-born Jatin followed it up with films, which however, didn’t prove fruitful.
In Chandigarh on Wednesday, Jatin talked about his innings in Bollywood and cleared the confusion over his name amongst other things. In 2001, the model made his debut with Hindi film Rahul, a Prakash Jha Production, which did not do well. Despite a long break and another flop film, Chetna (2005), Jatin insists it never put him off.
In the meanwhile, he delved in some more modelling assignments and did theatre with Mumbai-based Om Katare’s Yatri group. “Theatre brings out a real actor. It polishes the acting skills of a person, and helps in voice modulation. It’s always easy to differentiate between a theatre artist and any other actor,” opined Jatin, who was also seen in a 2002 Telegu film, Nee Snehan.
Lately, he’s done TV soaps, such as Zara on Sahara TV and Sabki Laadli Bebo on Star Plus that wrapped up last year. “Television helped me learn acting, and people accepted me easily. If that weren’t the case, I wouldn’t have continued acting,” he said, adding, “Acting is a craft, you either have it or you don’t.”
As Jatin attempts to make a comeback, does he believe his days of struggle are over? “I have never been a struggler,” he said instead. “I had to face zero struggle as a lot of opportunities came my way, and my destiny continues to favour me. So, I am quite positive about my comeback to the world of films.”
Next, he is excited about his Punjabi debut, Desi Munde, that also stars singer Balkar Sidhu. “In upcoming Hindi film Love U Soniyo, I play an army officer. Then there’s Shortcut Romeo, in which I play actor Ameesha Patel’s boyfriend. Both of these are scheduled to release in 2013,” shared Jatin. Does that also mean he comes with a new name preference? “My real name is Jatinder Grewal, but I started my career using Jatin.
Now, to get ahead in the Punjabi industry, I don’t want my name to sound like an alien. ‘Jatin’ doesn’t suit my Punjabi personality. So, if my Punjabi friends like calling me Bunty, then why not? In fact, in Mumbai also I am quite famous as Bunty,” he clarified.
There’s another role that he is set to play — that of a Punjabi film producer. “You cannot be a producer just to make money, there’s a lot of responsibility attached to it. My aim is to produce good movies such as Jatt & Juliet and Carry on Jatta, and to work with the godfather of Punjabi cinema, Manmohan Singh. I want to contribute quality work to the emerging Punjabi industry.”