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Aparshakti On Jubilee Success: Someone Must Have Said in Vikramaditya’s Office, Mera ‘Binod’ Kar Lega


Aparshakti Khurana’s performance in Vikramaditya Motwane’s Jubilee has been a game-changer for him. After several years of being cast as the second lead, he has now taken on the role of the main protagonist in the series that pays tribute to the Golden Age of Hindi cinema. In an exclusive chat with News18 Showsha, actor Aparshakti Khurana opens up about getting recognition for playing an aspiring actor, Binod Das, in Jubilee and what Ranveer Singh texted him after watching the acclaimed series. Excerpts:


Jubilee is a reminder that behind-the-scenes of showbiz is not as idyllic as what we see on the big screen. Speaking of the same in today’s time, how would you describe it?

It’s huge. People don’t realise the effort it takes to make a film or even to become an actor for that matter. We are living in an era when a part of the audience is busy trending ‘Boycott Bollywood’ on social media and debating on south vs Bollywood films. Sab ‘bhedh chaal’ mein ek hee baat keh rahe hai. They look at the perks of actors and not the hard work. I feel heartbroken at this. People only tend to see the grandeur of it and not what it takes. They snub the hard work of the writer, director, actor, crew and everyone else. I see established people like a Sanjay Leela Bhansali or Vikramaditya Motwane work so hard, all because of the passion they have for their work.

Jubilee is mounted on a grand scale. Its larger-than-life narratives set in the late ’40s and ‘50s are often riddled with risks. It’s either a hit or a miss. Did you have a second thought before you gave your nod to the show?

The script did win me over. For the longest time, I couldn’t believe that such a detailed and layered narrative had come my way. There have been times when I have been blown away by amazing writing. I remember watching Andhadhun and Paatal Lok and asking the respective writers for their scripts just to understand how the film or series turned out the way it did.

As for the risk, I want to thank Amazon Prime Video and Vikramaditya Motwane for the faith they’ve shown in the story. It’s such an expensive show. To put so much money on actors who are just starting off like myself is a big risk indeed. I am sure there was someone who thought ‘Inke upar paise laga rahe ho? Dimag kharab ho gaya hain kya?’. But the conviction came through. Kisine toh kaha hoga unke office mein ke mera ‘Binod’ kar lega! I hope this paves the way for more newcomers – and talented artists from OTT platforms get the respect and love they rightfully deserve.

You have been a part of films like Stree, Luka Chuppi and Patni Patni Aur Woh. Do you feel that it is Jubilee that has tapped into your full potential as an actor?

Yes. But, having said that, every actor puts in a lot of hard work in the projects they do. But unless it reaches the intended target audience, it makes little to no difference. Content could be king but it is important to consider how it will be distributed and who it will resonate with, otherwise there won’t be so many films lying unwatched on OTT platforms. Yes, I have not had such a well-etched role come my way until now. But, as an artist, I am not someone who constantly seeks more. I appreciate what comes my way and I don’t want to ever become complacent. I don’t pressure myself. I just pray to the universe to help me wisely absorb the love and appreciation I receive. I have worked as an actor for 7 years and today, it’s so heartening to wake up to congratulatory texts from artists I look up to, such as Ranveer Singh.

Your character in Jubilee starts from ground level and hopes to make it big in showbiz. Did you, at any point during the course of the shoot, draw parallels between your reel and real life? Did it elicit a been-there-done-that feeling?

Of course, I did. You derive motivation from such stories. Playing Madan Kumar wasn’t tough. It is common for every aspiring actor to have stood in front of a mirror and wondered whether they will achieve fame, drive a luxurious car, and don elegant suits. As they try to embody the essence of a character, they must also strive to find common ground with challenging roles, such as the character of Binod. It wasn’t an easy character to play at all. My favourite scene in the series is when the character in the library, Sharmaji, says that he has never seen anyone of Binod’s stature becoming a star.

Initially, I joined a channel as a costume designer and surreptitiously auditioned from time to time. Then, I was selected and became a host on the very same channel. It was beautiful to retrace a similar journey through Jubilee and to relive the same emotions I felt as a 22-year-old.

Given that your brother Ayushmann is a celebrated star with an enviable repertoire of work in his kitty, are comparisons unavoidable? How do you deal with it?

Honestly, I never had to deal with it. I don’t think anyone compares us as actors. When you start your career with a 5-minute role and work your way up, the credit lies solely with the audience. They have liked what they have seen and that’s why you are here. Actor banna humare haath mein hai. Star banana audience ke haath mein hai. It’s a rare scene ke dono bhaiyon ko pyaar mil raha hai. I feel blessed.

How has Ayushmann’s reaction been to the accolades you are garnering for your role in jubilee?

He’s a proud brother! After the screening, he gave a tight hug. I remember when Dangal happened, he said to me, ‘Yeh tuney apne aap kiya hai aur yeh mujhe pata hai.’ That statement has stayed with me till date. As an artist, I need validation from my family and fraternity first. And then the audience. We both are blessed to be part of the same fraternity and to be able to do the kind of cinema we do.

Rohit Shetty had said that the Ram Lakhan remake could not happen because two male stars apparently didn’t want to work together. Jubilee boasts of an ensemble cast. Did you ever find yourself vying for screen time and more importance?

It didn’t cross my mind. I just wanted to be a part of the beautiful world of Jubilee in whatever capacity Vikram sir deemed fit. But Rohit sir is right. He was perhaps referring to ‘stars’ of the industry. It’s unfortunate but true. I keep praying that even if I someday become a bigger star, I should be able to treat a script on its merit. One should let the director and writer decide what you do in a film. It’s a problem if you think you are bigger than the script.



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