As far as actor Pitobash is concerned, the shor never stops
Even as a child, Pitobash saw himself gracing the silver screen someday. From being actively involved in the Kolkata theatre scene as a student, Pitobash went on to study acting at the Film and Television Institute of India, and made his Bollywood debut with 99 in 2009. As Ravi Udyawar’s Mom hits screens today, the 32-year-old actor who won the Screen Award for Best Comedian in 2011 for Shor in the City, shares that in Mom he takes on a negative role for the first time. “The film is a thriller, and my role is on the grey side. It’s dark and different,” shares the Mumbai-based actor who first rose to fame with the critically acclaimed film I Am Kalam.
On working alongside a star cast that includes Sridevi, Akshaye Khanna and Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Pitobash tells us that - “In her 300th film, Sridevi ma’am still shows immense dedication, and it’s inspiring to watch her. As for Nawaz bhai, he has been a dear friend for over eight years now. There’s always something to learn from an actor of his calibre.” Talking about debutant director Ravi Udyawar, the actor says, “The director is the captain of the ship, and Ravi is Captain Cool. Whatever the situation, he made sure things kept moving along smoothly.”
Going back to his role as Surjeet in the recent Begum Jaan that was well-received, Pitobash is all praise for the film’s lead actor, Vidya Balan. “We were working with a cast of several newcomers, shooting in 45 degree heat in a place where there was nothing, but she never wavered in her dedication, and treated everyone the same. I've always admired her work, but now I truly admire her as a person.”
Having forayed into international cinema with his role in Jon Hamm-starrer Million Dollar Arm in 2014, Pitobash’s upcoming releases include the French film 7 Jours Pas Plus, where he plays a lead role alongside the acclaimed Belgian actor Benoît Poelvoorde. “It’s a story of how two strangers who don't understand each other’s language change each other's lives,”he says.
Treading new paths with the US-based sitcom Metropark, set to release in December, Pitobash states that the series that also stars the likes of Ranvir Shorey and Omy Vaidya was exciting to work on.“The show is about the cultural clash faced by Indian Americans. We Indians tend to carry our ways with us everywhere we go - from food to cricket to Bollywood. That makes for some good humour!” he adds.
It’s a busy year ahead for Pitobash, who also has Kireet Khurana’s T for Taj Mahal set for release – a social film, with Raveena Tandon in a special appearance, about three people from an illiterate village who come up with a plan to educate themselves. Also coming up is Gunday and Gudiya which will be produced by Anupam Kher. The actor does admit, “Fantasy and horror are two genres I haven’t had a shot at yet. I would love to reinvent myself for a role like that in the future!”
Mom opens in theatres today.