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Verve Man
November 14, 2016

Right Here, Right Now: Sushant Singh Rajput

Text by Shraddha Jahagirdar-Saxena. Photographed by Suresh Natarajan. Styling by Isha Bhansali

The much sought-after actor chats with us about the things in his life right now

On being an actor….
“In my growing up years, I had always been a quiet guy; I did not know what it felt like to express myself. But, after performing in a Barry John play in Delhi, I realised that I could actually make strangers think I was someone I was not. That is when I decided that even if I don’t get paid much for the rest of my life, I wanted to do this. And that is what I have done in theatre, then television and films. I’ve been doing the same thing. It’s just the medium and the pay cheques that continue to change.”

Living in the limelight….
“It is not easy. Earlier I would brood over all the talk, but now I make sure that I don’t read newspapers; I don’t watch some channels just to tune things out. I tell people I have a Teflon coating over me; so nothing sticks any more.”

A day in his life….
“I do not follow a fixed routine. But, I try to put myself in a situation where I do not know how to go about doing things. That is the time I feel really alive.”

 His strengths….
“Curiosity and an understanding of emotions, probably because I have dealt with them in my life. But, also since I do not take myself seriously, it is very easy to change into someone else on the screen.”

His style quotient….
“Confidence – inside, outside, everywhere.”

His grooming essentials….
“Proper nails. Great personal hygiene. Things that fit you properly, stuff that you are comfortable in and not stuff that you wear because you are deliberately trying to come across as cool. All these elements have to do with how you feel about yourself and not about what others think or how they look at you.”

On his iPod….
“I am doing a film where I am playing a rock star with a very distinct taste for music. So I have all the Metallica numbers, Kurt Cobain’s work and some of Cohen’s too.”

In his fridge….
“A huge amount of ice-cream. I love ice-creams!”

In his bag….
“Lots of books.”

On his black list….
“Hypocrites!”

In his wallet….
“My credit card. I don’t carry a lot of cash because I can’t handle it. So I make sure that I have my card with me all the time.”

In his bedroom….
“A big window that overlooks the sea.”

On his bookshelf….
“I like to read a lot and may end up reading more than one work at one time.”

Favourite reads….
“Among others, The Black Swan, Songs My Mother Taught Me, The Unbearable Lightness of Being, and a bit of Haruki Murakami.”

On his bucket list….
“Names of some directors whom I want to work with, not that I do not want to work with the others. But I have been thinking of these for some time – Anurag Kashyap, Anand Gandhi and Shekhar Kapur.”

On his DVD player, the movie he saw last….
I’m Not There, a movie about Bob Dylan.”

After M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story, what next….
“Apart from my existing projects, four to five new films have been suggested.”

Most important things in his life….
“The things that define me are the things that I do, and because of that I can do many things – I can have a relationship, I can have a dog, I can read many books. But the starting point is the fact that I am doing something that I really like, otherwise I would be figuratively dead.”

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