Ranveer Singh has had a good year, with both his 2013 releases — Lootera and Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela — earning him critical acclaim. He’s also been talked about for allegedly dating Deepika Padukone, but he clams up when you ask about that. He, however, does opens up about his alleged former girlfriend, Anushka Sharma, giving her almost mentor-like praise.
Who’s been the biggest influence in your acting career so far?
The two biggest influences have to be Anushka (Sharma, co-star Band Baaja Baaraat, 2010) and Sanjay Leela Bhansali (film-maker). She taught me so many things about the medium and acting. I was fortunate to have her as my co-star. She was one of the biggest influences. Anushka taught me a lot since I was only a beginner. She taught me everything that a novice needs to know before giving his first shot.
How was it working with Bhansali?
After gaining some experience and starting to think that you know the way to approach things, suddenly there comes Bhansali, who dispels all those beliefs. He bursts the bubble you’ve created, and shows you a different way of approaching work. And the kind of creative liberties he allows compels you to do your work well.
Sonakshi has been vocal about Lootera not getting its due at awards functions. Do you support her?
I fully do. I don’t use Twitter to make these statements, because it’s my medium to connect with those who follow my work. But if someone asks me, I’ll be open and say that I’m very disappointed. I think it was one of the best-reviewed films in a long time. I put a lot into that performance, and I really think that it went unnoticed. The least I expected was nominations for everyone, if not the best film prize. I won’t comment on my role, but it is a technically superior film. The art director, cinematographer, director, co-star, composer and lyricist — everyone deserved a nomination.
Tell us something about your next, Gunday.
I think the film is about the bond between these two guys — Bikram and Bala (played by Ranveer and Arjun Kapoor respectively). It’s the two of them that you feel for, invest in and go on a journey with. These are the characters that I love.
It seems to be a mass entertainer.
When you say mass entertainer, it’s as if it is a bad word. The kind of films that are coming out, and which are called mass entertainers, are nothing but a collection of items — item fight, item song, item scene, item gag or item gimmick. So in that sense, calling Gunday a mass entertainer may have some sort of a negative connotation. But no, the film is a mass entertainer with a difference.
What is the difference?
It has an actual story that’s threading the whole piece together. There are characters that you’re actually investing in. Yes, there are full on celebration of fights, song and dance, but that’s secondary. That’s a given, but it’s not what you’re selling. So, the film is a credible mass entertainer. It’s not nonsense.