There are few actors who are likeable in all avatars on and off screen. There can be multiple reasons for the same, the foremost being the fact that there is a lot of honesty and genuineness in them. One name which pops up immediately is that of Late Irrfan Khan. He was loved by one and all. He kept his stature same through out in highs and lows. Another current actor who is slowly settling into this category is Pankaj Tripathi.
We had a chance to attend a session with him and Mayank Shekhar, a highly renowned movie critic at Mid Day, at IFFI Goa this year. And we were left awestruck and inspired by the simplicity and clarity of thought Pankaj has.
To begin with, he himself acknowledged the fact that he is being marked as someone who is liked by all and is good to all which sometimes is a food for thought to him if he is actually that good. The Mantra he follows is to have no friends as well as no enemies in the industry and to treat everyone with the same amount of respect. This in itself remains more of a theory these days more so in the glittering world of Bollywood. So it is very rare to find someone with such thought process.
As far as acting is concerned, he found it to be the easiest task reiterating what Shakespeare said that the world is a stage and we are all playing so many characters in our life already whether it is of a son or father or friend or an employee with so many natural emotions of love, anger, hatred etc. So it isn’t that difficult to play it on screen. The difference lies in the fact that in life the scenes are created naturally while in acting we need to recreate those scenes. And for that training becomes mandatory. He also commended the work of good directors who can extract the best from anyone they want. But in general, he felt training gives you the ability and confidence to recreate situations for acting.
An important anecdote he shared was that when Mahesh Bhatt called him admiring his character’s expressions even when that character was not in spotlight. That demonstrated the sincerity one should have in doing anything and not get worried about the results or the limelight. Eventually if you deserve it, you will get it.
Sharing his struggle stories, he reiterated the importance of Hope in one’s life. Failures should make you stronger and shouldn’t deter your hope. We should stick to our job with all honesty and a way will be paved soon.
These aren’t new thoughts and neither are they something complicated. But we can’t deny the fact that these simple tools or behaviours work across in all disciplines and if as an individual we imbibe some of these, we will definitely be a better version of ourselves!