Jimmy Shergill has proved his mettle to both critics and the masses alike through films like Maachis, Mohabbatein and the more recent Sahib, Biwi and Gangster and Dangerous Ishq. Shergill is now busy with Rajdhani Express releasing January 2013. Shergill tells Millennium Post about working with Saif, dream roles and more. Excerpts:
Tell us about your role in Rajdhani Express...
It’s a socio-political thriller. As the name suggests, it’s a story in a train which leaves from Delhi for Mumbai and the plot unfolds eventually. The story has three basic elements comprising a tiff between a political set-up and its influence and police officers who are in charge of the situation. I play a cop in it and cannot reveal much about the role. The treatment of the film is gritty with back and forth thrilling moments.
How was the experience of working with Saif Ali Khan in Bullet Raja?
He is a fantastic co-star. We have worked together in Eklavya and Hum Tum before. But this time, it was different in the sense that we opened up more during the shoot. I discovered sides of him which were unknown to me till now. Saif has a great sense of humour and his one liners are killers. He can really put away any work pressure with ease.
How is Punjabi cinema different from Bollywood?
Shooting wise it is similar as Punjabi cinema is more rooted to its culture and the state etc. But even though the language is different, there are a lot commonalities between both cinemas since there is a lot of influx of Punjabis in Bollywood. Any changes which are done happen at script and production levels.
Your careergraph has both ups and downs. Why is it so?
It’s all destiny. Currently I am enjoying my stature in the industry. I also love experimenting with my roles and today I can say I am selective about my roles and the kind of films I want to be a part of. I only work with people I want to.
Your dream role...
Nothing concrete. All I have to say is that someone somewhere is wrting a script which will only suit me and that role will carry on with me for my entire life. It just has to meet me.
What kind of films would you want to do more?
I mostly prefer light-hearted roles. So far people consider me as an actor best cut out for intense roles. I want to try something light now but it has to be a good script.
What’s your take on the new wave in Indian cinema? Do you support the Rs 100 crore club or off-beat films?
The audience today are enjoying the variety Bollywood has to offer. They like the realistic art cinema as much as they enjoy the typical masala films. There is variety which is helping Bollywood grow. I second the Rs 100 crore club too because at the end of the day profit matters. The bridge between off beat and commercial cinema is definitely getting smaller.
Are you open to theatre?
I did try for theatre too but unfortunately its far more taxing for me. I would really love to perform on stage but there is a huge dearth of time.
We never hear about your link ups. Are you genuinely faithful or too careful?
Firstly am not a party person, so my non presence doesn’t fuel gossips. I reach on time for shoots and head back home straight to my wife. I am a far more domesticated person than people might percieve me to be.
If not an actor, what would you have been?
Not sure. Things just happened in my life on its own. I had earlier planned to do MBA since I belong to a business family and had no filmi background.