June 10, 2023

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“I didn’t come to this city chasing fame or money”: Rajkummar Rao

Looking back at his decade-long career, Shahid and Stree star Rajkummar Rao says his journey in Bollywood has been surreal and rewarding but not without its share of challenges. The actor said his late mother’s faith in him kept him going even on days when he had nothing when he moved to Mumbai from Gurgaon to chase his childhood dream.

Rao started his career with Dibakar Banerjee’s Love Sex Aur Dhokha 10 years ago and soon earned acclaim for his performances in films like Kai Po Che!, Aligarh and Newton.

In an interview with PTI, the National award-winning actor spoke about completing a successful decade in the film industry. “The initial two years when I was looking for work, it was extremely tough. There were days when there was no money to buy food. But my mother gave me that confidence and she had this unshakable trust in me. I would call back home and they would send me money so that I could have food on my table,” the actor told PTI.

Rao, 36, a Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) graduate, said it was only after Banerjee’s found-footage drama in 2010 that things started moving forward for him. But even when he was struggling, the thought of putting his acting ambitions on hold didn’t cross Rao’s mind.

“I never thought of giving up, of going back and doing something else. I never came with a plan-B. This is what I wanted to do ever since I was a kid. Things started moving post ‘LSD’ and since then the journey has been good. When I look back, it feels surreal. I never expected this to happen, to do all these wonderful films and roles. I didn’t come to this city chasing fame or money. I am in films because I really love it,” he added.

It isn’t that when his success streak started, there were no setbacks. After consecutive hits, from 2017 comedy Bareilly Ki Barfi, National Award-winning black comedy-drama Newton to the 2018 horror comedy Stree, Rao saw a failure with his big 2019 Diwali release Made in China.

Rao said despite the film’s failure, he is proud of the project as he looks at failures only as temporary. “I am proud of the film. There are those films as well which I think I could’ve avoided, but that’s alright. What I’ve realised is you can’t be low. The key is to get up and move on to the next one.”

Report by Chetali S M
Reported on – 26/03/2021

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