Ayushmann Khurrana: You are unlucky if you don’t get setbacks
After he wowed viewers with his charming, loutish Delhi lad act in Vicky Donor (2012), a string of flops followed for actor Ayushmann Khurrana, with Nautanki Saala! (2013), Bewakoofiyaan (2014) and Hawaizaada (2015) bombing at the box office. But he bounced back with Dum Laga Ke Haisha (2015) and then Bareilly Ki Barfi (2017), going on to become the poster boy for quirky, unconventional subjects. With Article 15 lined up next along with four others — Bala, Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan, Dream Girl and Gulabo Sitabo— Ayushmann is now upping the ante in a game he has so far aced. Excerpts from a chat:
When your films didn’t work at the box office one after the other, what kept you going?
It all depends on you. You have to motivate yourself to become better. Adversity is a kind of blessing in life — it teaches you to be strong. If you don’t get setbacks, you are unlucky. You need to continue marching ahead. Your failures help you form the learning curve.
After the success of the Andhadhun and Badhai Ho (both 2018), people expect a lot more from you. How do you plan to live up to it?
It’s a very happy expectation. The year 2018 was a landmark for Indian cinema — it proved that good content can make you cross ₹100 crore. The response has made me brave and strong. Now, I have the courage to make a socially relevant film like Article 15. It is beyond commercial gain. I’m not thinking about opening collections. I just want the film to reach even the interiors of the country. If not a change, it should at least start a conversation.
How do you look at the current phase when you have five films lined up, compared to the earlier not-so-good time?
It makes me feel better and work harder. I want to continue being part of out-of-the-box films. When the character is spunky and the script is also radical, it’s like the cherry on the top. The kind of scripts I’m getting are somewhat like that, and allow me to show my versatility.
Are you planning to make your web debut in you wife, Tahira’s web film?
Not sure. It’s a woman-centric film and I have no idea what I can do in that. So she’ll figure and let me know.
Author tweets @Shreya_MJ
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