Sunday November 17, 2019

Acting is Not My Cup of Tea, Says Yo Yo Honey Singh

Does stardom bring insecurity in its wake? "I think the statement is wrong. Not just stars -- anyone can be insecure. It is a part of nature, and insecurity is not a part of my nature," he said

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Yo Yo Honey Singh
Yo Yo Honey Singh at a concert.

BY DURGA CHAKRAVARTY

He regularly makes news with his instant winner rap numbers, as well as the often-controversial lyrics of the songs. Rapper Yo Yo Honey Singh, who enjoys a following of 5.3 million on Twitter and 3.4 million on Instagram, has belted out numerous hits, and has been tagged a pioneer of Punjabi pop since the late 2000s.

To take his game to the next level, Singh has also tried venturing into the world of acting. He made his acting debut with the 2012 Punjabi film “Mirza: The Untold Story”, and two years later made his Bollywood debut with “The Xpose” alongside Himesh Reshammiya.

The rap sensation has tried a few more times since then, to be a star in front of the camera. However, releases such as “Tu Mera 22 Main Tera 22” and “Zorawar” — which is marketed as one of the most expensive Punjabi films to date — did not help him recreate the frenzy he so effortlessly triggers off among fans as a singer.

Singh is now convinced he doesn’t want to act in films anymore.

“I tried acting and I realised it is not my cup of tea. I think I should not do it,” Singh told IANS.

His streak with hit music, of course, will continue. Not only is he regularly spinning chartbusting non-film hits, his rap numbers have contributed to the success of film soundtracks such as “Cocktail”, “Chennai Express”, “Khiladi 786”, “Boss” and “Sonu Ki Titu Ki Sweety”. The last mentioned has won him the Best Music Director’s trophy at many popular awards ceremonies including International Indian Film Academy Awards (IIFA).

Yo Yo Honey Singh
Singer Honey Singh. (Wikimedia Commons)

If the expectations of fans has only increased with each new release, Singh is cool with it. “I don’t take it as a pressure. Making a good song is more important to me, and I don’t take any stress about a song being a hit or not,” said the rapper, whose real name is Hirdesh Singh.

“I really like making songs from the bottom of my heart, and whether it is a hit or not depends on people,” he added.

Over the past five to six years, the Hindi film industry has seen a surge in rappers such as Badshah, Raftaar and Ikka, to name some. They too have been belting out hits. Has Bollywood music become all about cutthroat competition now?

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“I believe if a person makes multiple music, or does work there is no competition for them. If you are doing multiple things then there is no competition for you,” said Singh.

Does stardom bring insecurity in its wake? “I think the statement is wrong. Not just stars — anyone can be insecure. It is a part of nature, and insecurity is not a part of my nature,” he said. (IANS)

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Anil Kapoor: I Need To Learn How To Go Easy On Myself

Actor Anil Kapoor says that he needs to learn to go easy on himself

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Actor Anil Kapoor
Anil Kapoor says that he has always been his worst critic. Wikimedia Commons.

After four decades in Bollywood, Anil Kapoor feels he needs to learn how to go easy on himself, and that is his biggest challenge. The actor says he has always been his worst critic.

Anil entered the industry with a small role in 1979 with Umesh Mehra’s “Hamare Tumhare”, and then went on to carve his niche by balancing his stature as a respectable actor and his popularity as a saleable star, with performances including “Woh 7 Din”, “1942: A Love Story”, “Mr. India”, “Tezaab”, “Ram Lakhan”, “Lamhe”, “Beta”, “Taal”, “Nayak: The Real Hero” and “Pukar”.

At 62, he has managed to keep himself relevant in the forever fickle world of Bollywood showbiz, and his fit and sprightly persona defies his age. Anil insists his constant struggle is to go easy on himself.

“I’ve always been hard on myself and I’m always my own worst critic. So my biggest challenge continues to learn to go easy on myself and to let go when I need to,” Anil told IANS.

He says his career goals continue to be the same as they were all those years ago, when he was starting out.

“Strangely enough, my goals haven’t changed much! I’m a simple man with a simple plan — to be better than I was yesterday. So that’s what I continue to strive towards,” said the actor.

Anil Kapoor
Anil Kapoor feels that Cinema is the most engaging way in which stories are told. Wikimedia Commons

If anything, he has managed to stay relevant by experimenting with his craft and subjects, as trends changed in Bollywood over the past 40 years.

There have been the international forays, too. He featured in Danny Boyle’s Oscar-wiing global blockbuster “Slumdog Millionaire”, and also worked in “24”, “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol” and “Family Guy”.

His versatility is proved by the fact that he was equally at home in these international projects as he was in out-and-out Bollywood outings as “No Entry”, “Welcome”, “Race”, “Dil Dhadakne Do”, “Mubarakan”, “Fanney Khan”, “Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga” and “Total Dhamaal”.

“I’ve always believed that change is the only constant. So, I have let life and opportunities change me along the way, in the most organic ways possible. The only thing that hasn’t changed is the passion I feel for my work,” said the actor, who recently became part of a panel discussion by Royal Stag Barrel Select Large Short Films in Kolkata to decode “what makes films powerful”, as part of a six-city tour.

Royal Stag Barrel Select Large Short Films brings stars together to talk about the power of cinema and the short film genre. The panel discussion in Kolkata was moderated by Anupama Chopra, and also included Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, Vinay Pathak, Sheetal Menon, Bejoy Nambiar and Niranjan Iyengar.

“Cinema is perhaps the most engaging way in which stories are told and shared”, he said, adding: “And stories have always had the power to shape minds and lives.”

The actor points out that power comes with a sense of responsibility.

Anil Kapoor
Anil Kapoor along with ‘Shootout at Wadala’ cast at a promotional event. Wikimedia Commons

“Anyone in a position to influence minds and hearts has a responsibility towards the people they are reaching. Not everyone is fortunate enough to have the right platform and a mouthpiece to communicate with the world, so when you do, it comes with the duty to be mindful of the message you’re sharing and affirming,” said the father of three.

Anil will be back on the big screen in Anees Bazmee’s “Pagalpanti”, with whom he has in the past worked in “No Entry”, “Welcome”, “No Problem”, “Welcome Back” and “Mubarakan”.

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“Pagalpanti” also stars John Abraham, Arshad Warsi, Pulkit Samrat, Ileana D’Cruz, Kriti Kharbanda, Urvashi Rautela and Saurabh Shukla, and is slated to release on November 22.

The film is produced by Bhushan Kumar and Krishan Kumar’s T-Series and Kumar Mangat Pathak and Abhishek Pathak’s Panorama Studios and co-produced by Vinod Bhanushali, Shiv Chanana, Aditya Chowksey and Sanjeev Joshi. (Bollywood Country)