Ashutosh Rana recalls his reaction when he was offered Dushman, says fulfilled his ‘promise’ to Mahesh Bhatt

Published on Dec 15, 2021 06:05 PM IST

Ashutosh Rana spoke about his reaction when Mahesh Bhatt offered him Dushman. He said that he had promised Mahesh that he would win an award for the film.

Ashutosh Rana featured in Dushman (1998).
Ashutosh Rana featured in Dushman (1998).

Actor Ashutosh Rana took a trip down memory lane and recalled his reaction when Mahesh Bhatt offered him 1998 film Dushman. Mahesh Bhatt was the screenplay writer of the movie. In a post shared by Humans of Bombay on Instagram, Ashutosh revealed that he asked Mahesh if he could ‘scream’ in excitement when he was offered the role of the villain. He also promised Mahesh that he would win an award which he later did. 

In Dushman, released in 1998, Ashutosh Rana essayed the role of a sadistic killer, Gokul Pandit. The film also featured Kajol, Sanjay Dutt, Jas Arora, Tanvi Azmi, Kunal Khemu, Anupam Shyam, Vani Tripathi among others.

A part of the post quoted Ashutosh as saying, "I was 4 when I first performed on a stage; I always enjoyed the spotlight! I'd even take part in local Ram-Leela plays–playing Ravan. My parents attended all my plays! Papa would say, ‘Follow this passion, it’ll lead to happiness.’ His words became my mantra. And so after I graduated school, with my spiritual Guru’s encouragement, I joined NSD; honing my skill as an actor fulfilled me. And when I felt ready, I came to Mumbai to live my dream."

He added, "The first few weeks were spent commuting from one corner to another, looking for work. And it was during one of these auditions that I met Mr Mahesh Bhatt. He offered me a role in ‘Swabhimaan’, a television serial! That was my 1st break! I couldn’t wait to see myself on screen! Papa told me, ‘I know your talent, make the most of this opportunity!’ I tried to live upto my potential & when I saw myself on screen… I still get shivers when I think of that feeling. After Swabhimaan, I got a lot of work! And although I wished to get longer screen time, maine chhote kaam bhi bade man se kiye (I essayed even the small roles with the same heart)."

Ashutosh continued, "One practice I followed was never comparing my journey with other actor’s. And so, after 4 years of persevering, one day Mahesh Sir called me to his office and offered me the lead role as a villain in ‘Dushman!’ I was so overwhelmed that I asked him, ‘Can I scream?’ When he said yes, I yelled with happiness! Then I promised Sir, ‘I’ll win you a Filmfare Award,’ And I did! I recall giving my ‘Thank you’ speech; it felt surreal…" The actor not only won the Filmfare Award for Best Performance in a Negative Role but also Screen Awards for the same. 

Also Read | Ashutosh Rana: More than age, edge is important. Today I have a good balance of josh and hosh

Recently, Ashutosh was seen in the Netflix thriller series Aranyak. Directed by Vinay Waikul, Aranyak also featured Raveena Tandon and Sartaaj Kakkar.

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