Nawazuddin Siddiqui is known for playing diverse roles with ease. He catapulted to a different league after his gritty performance in Anurag Kashyap’s Gangs of Wasseypur (2012). Since then, there has been no looking back for the actor who went on to do films such as Bombay Talkies (2013), The Lunchbox (2013), Badlapur (2015) and Bajrangi Bhaijaan (2015), to name a few.
A majority of his roles have been dark and intense like his recent release, Raman Raghav (2016). Nawazuddin says these roles have taken a toll on him at times. “Whatever character you play, at the end of the day you will live that life. That, automatically, will affect you at some level. For me, it’s never about a film or a character, because the movie becomes my life. I was depressed after Manjhi (2015), as it was an emotionally overwhelming role. But you need to forget that part of your life and move on. That is the only way forward,” he says.
With an international TV show in his kitty, does Nawazuddin feel the need to establish himself in Hollywood like a lot of his colleagues from the Hindi film industry?
“Not at all. I get great roles here and I am absolutely satisfied in India. I don’t need go around asking for roles in Hollywood. Why should I? I take pride in all my films. If they come here and offer a film that appeals to me, I will do it. I don’t need to go there [to the West] and struggle for roles. I am quite happy and content in Bollywood,” Nawaz shoots back.
How does he feel about the Indian actors who are trying their luck in Hollywood? “If they’re getting good offers, that’s great. I am no one to say anything about any other actor who is working in the West. To each his own,” he says.
In the last five years, Nawazuddin Siddiqui has been a part of almost 10 films, each role, much different than the other. But is 10 too less a number, considering he has been part of Bollywood for much longer?
“I have no complaints. I have received the opportunity to play such amazing and different roles in Bollywood. I’ve got more than what I deserve. Even when I didn’t get much work for 12 years, I didn’t complain. What would I complain about now? People have been extremely kind to me and I feel thankful for all the good things that has come my way. I am not dejected about anything and I harbour no ill feelings towards anyone. It’s a great time to be in Bollywood, and I am doing all I can to perform to the best of my abilities,” says the actor.