Actor Murali Sharma, who is known for playing diverse roles in Bollywood movies and in Telugu, Tamil and Marathi cinema, visited Indore to attend a private event recently. HT caught up with the actor for a tête-à-tête. Here is what he had to say:
You have often played the role of a cop and a criminal too. How do you prepare for your roles?
If it is a well written script, an actor doesn’t need to prepare at all. If you understand the scene and its significance in the movie, half your job is done. Dialogues are your weapon and one should remember them always. I keep on reminding my producers to send me lines beforehand so that I know what I am supposed to do the next day. My theatrical background says just read the scene about 10 times and take the gist with you.
There are actors who meet actual professionals before playing them onscreen. Do you also do the same?
I never do that. I only did so while playing a eunuch about 15 years ago in a one-hour series called Rishtey on a television channel. That was the only time I thought I should do so. I strongly believe that I know my craft and I am not being pompous when I say that. But what one needs is a well written script. Acting becomes a cakewalk then.
What prominent change do you see in cinema these days?
I think 'dialogue baazi' is back. There are dialogues like Aata manji satakli, Ek baar commitment kar diya, Welcome to Goa Singham, which are catchy. People remember the lines of the character actors as well. There has been a drastic change as compared to films in 1990s and people like Bejoy (Nambiar), Prakash Jha, Anurag (Kashyap), Rohit Shetty, have their own signature style. We have a melange of films now. On one side, there is a David while on another there is Singham. On one side, we have Kick while we also have Lootera or a Happy Ending which is being appreciated by cinema-goers. Cinema is going through a sea change and it’s amazing to see that.
Any plans to write a script?
I have no plans to move out of acting as of now. I am an avid reader but wouldn’t prefer penning a script. I have worked in some 60 odd films not only in Hindi but in different languages and I would like to be recognised for my impressive characters in these films.
What are you working on these days?
I am doing a film titled Wazi which also stars Amitabh Bachchan and Farhan Akhtar. I have worked in ABCD 2 with Remo (D’Souza) sir. I am also doing a film with Mahesh Manjrekar which is a remake of his Marathi film. I am also shooting for the film Badlapur. Remo sir has produced a film titled Death of Amar which is an official remake of a Hollywood film. I am also acting in it.
You have worked in television shows as well as films. What difference do you find in the two?
As an actor, you don’t perform differently. There is surely a difference in technicality. Television is so big these days and I feel like being a part of it again but I have films in my hand and I don’t think I would be able to spare time which television demands. Television has grown as an industry. The sets which are especially made for TV are magnanimous. Television keeps you on your toes as you have to shoot every day but this may vary in case of films.
What do you do when you are not shooting?
I might read for about two hours in the morning. I love to cook. It helps me unwind. I go for walks regularly as I don’t prefer walking on a treadmill. I find it too monotonous.