Says Aasif Khan, the gen-next web-series actor and the small-town boy who’s been discovered by many directors. In conversation with Aasif Khan who shares the inside-out journey of Hindi film industry and his experiences with Mihir Shah.
1.When did all this start, like the love for acting?
A- ”Qissa kursi ka” was first play I did during my school days when i was in 5th standard. Mostly I did well in curricular activities but I never knew I would end up being a full-time Actor career-wise as there are lot of difficulties to reach here.
2.Which is your first break/Role ? As in ur first role and was it special for you, if YES then WHY ?
A- ”India’s most wanted” movie was my first break and it will the most special for me. As you know first break is very near to your heart. And director RajKumar Gupta is the one whom I’ve always wished to work with and I am glad I got a chance. Even today the cast of the film is in touch and we still talk with each-other like a family, it was a special bond with them.
3. Which part of India you belong to ? Was it tough struggling and managing in Mumbai ? Share a bit about your journey.
A- I Am from Nimbahera town located in Chittorgarh district in Rajasthan. Back in 2010 I came Mumbai to struggle and audition for roles, one year passed away and I went back as nothing happened. I thought to polish myself so I joined a theatre group in Jaipur for 5 years. I came back Mumbai in mid 2016 and again started giving auditions, for survival I started assisting Abhishek Banerjee and Anmol Ahuja where I learnt many things. I started giving auditions while working side-by-side and started getting few Ad’s, a role of reporter in “Toilet” movie, a character role with Anushka Sharma in “Pari” and so on. India’s most wanted happened in 2017 and hence I never looked back as work started coming in.
4.What is Acting? Is it necessary for one to join an acting school to enter the industry and your take on it and what advice you would like to give the youngsters out there ?
A- This question is tough and easy both. You may find different answers from google or any other actors. But lets not make it complicated, its a smooth process and the more you go deeper you will understand it smoothly. Yes, its important to join an acting school or a better institute to polish your skills. But again I say its not important or compulsory as many successfull actors working today have not been to any acting school. But for polishing the acting skills I recommend NSD,FTII or any theatre groups. And one message to youngsters, do not panic or come Mumbai in a hurry, just in case of you feel that you have done enough training and realize the self-confidence in you then only leave your home-town and come Mumbai. Anyways I believe theatre is a best thing if you want to join this Industry and live here for a long time.
5. You played a reporter in “Jamtara” series. How did you prepare for it and when are we expecting the next part?
A- Yes, playing reporter’s role in Jamtara was an exciting part. As I got a call for final selection for Jamtara I was in Nepal shooting for India’s Most Wanted, so I missed few workshops of Jamtara. I saw few videos on Youtube about how hindi journalists work. Also our director Soumendra Padhi sent me few pictures and clips of hindi journalists to make the character look more real. This was my homework and also I learnt that many journalists in the country fear for life and its a tough job being one. As of now no official announcement made for season 2 of Jamtara, but we are super excited for it.
6. You have worked with finest actors like Pankaj Tripathi, Arjun Kapoor, Jeetendra Kumar and many more. Any special things or tips you learnt from them ?
A- Seeing the best actors on TV/Big screen and finally working with them one day is a dream come true. Even today when I go on sets, I still can’t believe as it still looks like a dream.
All of us know Pankaj Tripathi is one of the finest actors in India and I refer him as a “Acting ki Encyclopedia”, I got to learn many things from him and also from Ali Fazal. Got more technical knowledge from Arjun Kapoor during “India’s most wanted”. Jeetendra Kumar is such a sweet guy and down to earth person, he is a gem of a person. Also Amit Sial, our senior actor in Jamtara is fabulous at his job.
7. Panchayat was an amazing series, people loved your “Dulha” role . How you pulled the character off so smoothly ? Share your experience about the role.
A- Was unsure of Panchayat as it was a small part. But the casting director pushed me up to do it as he knew I could pull it off easily. As I belong to a small town from Rajasthan, it was very efficient for me to pull the character off. Dulha’s usually from small towns are soft from inside and a little arrogant during their marraige as they are on cloud 9, the scene turned out quite well and we got a good response.
8. You did Mirzapur, Jamtara, Panchayat and other few, which series is more closer to your heart and Why?
A- Its too tough to decide one. As whichever series/ movie you shoot for you get along well with all the co-actors and the crew and maintain a healthy relation. If you still say one to choose, I would say watching Jamtara was a joyride.
9. How many rejections you have faced till now ? Any tips while giving an audition ?
A- As I told you before, 2010-2017 all these years I had gone through countless rejections. Again telling all the youngsters, please train yourself and come Mumbai. Also please talk in Hindi more, people nowadays speak english unnecessarily and to just show off. They forget they are going to work in Hindi Film Industry. Few actors fail to get UP/Bihar diction and mix english sometimes in their dialogues which sounds weird. Also make sure you listen to the casting guys properly when you audition, many of them ignore this point.
10. After 5 years do you see “Aasif Khan ” directing or just Acting ? And why ?
A- Hahahha… Direction is not my cup of tea. Even after 5/10/15 years Aasif Khan will just focus on acting. Also I do not have any other back up plan like others besides acting and do not expertise in any other field. This is the only thing I will do.
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