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HomeEntertainmentSidharth Malhotra Says Nora Fatehi's Manike in Thank God Isn't 'An Item...

Sidharth Malhotra Says Nora Fatehi’s Manike in Thank God Isn’t ‘An Item Song’ | Exclusive

Two years after Marjaavaan (2019), actor Sidharth Malhotra is back on the big screen with Thank God, a fantasy comedy-drama, where he plays a real-estate agent who gets called to the heavens after he meets with a freak accident. The film has piqued the curiosity of his fans, who are waiting to see him shed the image of a brooding and intense guy and try his hands at comedy.

In an exclusive conversation with News18, Sidharth acknowledges the paradigm shift in his oeuvre with Thank God but maintains that he has always wanted to constantly push the envelope and try his hands at diverse genres. “I don’t know if it was a conscious decision [to do a light-hearted film]. If you look at my body of work, you’ll see that I’ve always tried to do different things. In Ittefaq (2017), I played a negative character. In Ek Villain (2014), my third film, I had a very intense and aggressive character. Brothers (2015) was also very different. In Kapoor & Sons (2016), I played the youngest son in the family,” he explains.

He also attributes his decision to signing Thank God to veteran director Indra Kumar, who has belted out hits such as Dil (1990), Ishq (1997), Dhamaal (2007), among others. “I remember the first narration at my house with the writers and the director, and I just reacted to the material. It made me laugh and think about certain things which made me relate to my character and the situations he gets into. And the ending really warmed my heart. The tone of the script came from our director and I was very excited to jump into that tonality,” elaborates Sidharth.

Shedding further light on what drew him to the film co-starring Ajay Devgn and Rakul Preet Singh, the Shershaah (2021) actor continues, “I’m not playing for comedy in the film. My character is frustrated. In today’s world, the working middle-class person, who has a family, is trying to go above a certain level and is seeking a house or a promotion at work and prays hard for it. I’ve friends and family who have faced this. In fact, we all have been there. So, it’s this frustration that makes you laugh while watching the film. While playing the part, all my bhadaas (frustration) came out (laughs).”

The film, which released On October 25, may have garnered a fairly positive buzz, but it landed in legal trouble a while back for allegedly hurting religious sentiments. A case has been filed in a court for its portrayal of Lord Chitragupta.

Reacting to it, Sidharth, who recently completed a decade in showbiz, remarks, “While reading a script, you’re looking at the story. I feel at times it’s not fair to watch one snippet and judge a whole film. You can’t judge a book by its cover. I’m waiting for people to actually see the whole two hours of the film and then have a discussion and dialogue on why a character is saying something. Then they can decide what we’ve done and what the tonality and our intention is. That’s the correct way to judge a film.”

What also grabbed a lot of attention is the Hindi recreation of the viral sensation, Manike. While some called the remake a hit, others slammed the makers for blindly following the trend of recreations and diluting the core novelty of the track.

But the 37-year-old remains unfazed. Talking about how the song plays an important role in taking the narrative ahead, he expresses, “It’s the main song in the film. Nora (Fatehi; actor) plays an interesting character; she doesn’t come in for the song alone. It’s very well-integrated into the story as opposed to it being just an item song. We’re happy that people are liking it.”

Happy to have shared screen space with Nora again, Sidharth adds, “Nora and I’ve done many songs in the past but the first time I’ve danced with her is in Manike. We did a song in Marjaavaan (Ek Toh Kum Zindagani) as well where I was just looking at her dance. At that time, I had told her that the next time we do a song, I’ll make sure that I do some moves and that’s what we did with Manike.”

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