Actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui says he is a director’s actor and keeps his slate “clean” when he is prepping for a role.
The 46-year-old actor, known for films such as Gangs of Wasseypur series, Badlapur, Bajrangi Bhaijaan, and Netflix series Sacred Games, said he doesn’t create a character in his head beforehand as he fears he may “get on the wrong track”.
“My acting process depends on directors, I trust them completely. I keep my slate clean. I consider myself foolish (about the role) till we start working on the film.
“When we begin, I try to catch on to what the director says. Also, when you work with great actors, your game automatically goes a level up,” he said.
The National School of Drama graduate will next be seen in crime thriller Raat Akeli Hai, which marks the directorial debut of casting director Honey Trehan. In the film, the actor plays Inspector Jatil Yadav, who is summoned to investigate the death of a politician.
Nawazuddin’s character, like his name, is a man of complexities who struggles with his own insecurities while solving the case. “The character also comes into his own as he investigates the case. He transforms into a more evolved person at the end,” he added.
Talking about working with Trehan, Nawazuddin said it didn’t feel like he was directing a film for the first time. “It felt as if he has directed 15-20 films earlier. He had such clarity – be it discussing the inner world of the characters with the actors or any other aspect of filmmaking. He has a pure thought about cinema and an actor is always ready to collaborate with someone who has such a connect with films.” As the world battles with the coronavirus pandemic, the critically-acclaimed actor said one must try to utilise this trying time to “rectify our mistakes”.
“I don’t know how life will be from now on. We have got a good time to rectify our mistakes. We should try to be more supportive of each other during this time. This is a hint that the human race must protect each other, otherwise things can get worse,” he added.
Before nationwide lockdown was announced in mid-March, Nawazuddin was shooting for Kushan Nandy’s Dimple Bhaag Jayegi in Lucknow. They previously worked together on 2017’s Babumoshai Bandookbaaz.
“We only shot for three days and then the lockdown was announced. We will get back to shooting once it is safer,” he added.
Also starring Radhika Apte, Shweta Tripathi, Tigmanshu Dhulia, Shivani Raghuvanshi, Nishant Dahiya, Ila Arun, Swanand Kirkire and Aditya Srivastava, Raat Akeli Hai will start streaming on Netflix from Friday.