Post The Namesake, Life in a... Metro and A Mighty Heart, Irrfan Khan has taken a conscious decision to do only lead roles.
"No more peripheral roles," Irrfan told IANS.
"In Metro, the writer and director Anurag Basu gave me the freedom to interpret my character how I wanted. If they hadn't given me this freedom, I'd have gone into my shell, as I often do while doing my job," he added.
The actor came into the limelight after his outstanding performance in Vishal Bharadwaj's Maqbool, which was an adaptation of William Shakespeare's famous play Macbeth. He was flooded with roles after that, but most were for supporting roles.
"I'm rather tired of being treated as a commodity, to be used as and when other ingredients run dry. Now I'll play the lead and play it with the same conviction and credibility that I extend to my supporting roles. Every day I get offers to do supporting parts. I'm still struggling against this kind of casting."
Among the many exciting films that have come to him is Farhan Akhtar's first period film tentatively titled Voice From The Sky.
"I'm in serious talks with Farhan for a film that he'll direct next year. It's a period film. Though I've done a 'period-less' film called Warrior, I've never done a period film before.
"And, in fact, I've been offered another period film, a true life thriller about a royal Bengali family, by Homi Adjani."
<b1>Irrfan is very excited about working with Farhan, who so far has made three films on three different topics.
Farhan's directorial debut Dil Chahta Hai was an urban drama about friendship and love, second was a well-crafted war film titled Lakshaya and the last was crime thriller Don, a remake of 70s hit of the same now. And now he is making film on the evolution of mobile phones.
"It's a very interesting script about the evolution of the telephone medium as a means of communication. And Farhan will himself direct the film. I'm really excited about that."
Irrfan, who also plays the lead in Anubhav Sinhas' next, says he enjoys comedy roles.
"I love doing comedy. Sometimes life gets funnier than the movies. For example, I read this weird report in a daily that I arrive two hours late every day for Rohit Shetty's Sunday. I've never arrived late in my life."
The actor says he won't allow anybody to tarnish his reputation.
"It has taken me 12 years to build my reputation as a professional and an actor. I won't allow anyone to snatch away the glory that has come to me now. I've waited very patiently. As the veteran director Lekh Tandon has said to me, after The Namesake life isn't easy for me. Luckily, directors are coming forward with exciting offers."
Irrfan feels pleased when filmmakers desist from taking him for granted.
"My friend Aditya Bhattacharya, with whom I did Dubai Returned, offered me a film saying, 'Please say no if you don't want to do it.' I wish other directors would give me the same freedom."