Alexx O Nell gives an outsider’s perspective with his character in Roohi
Alexx O’Nell calls himself an honorary Bengali. He has already done two films — Yeti Obhijaan and Ek Je Chilo Raja and is gearing up for another Tolly release besides filming his fourth with filmmaker Srijt Mukherji. The Mumbai-based American actor has also been spotted in quite a few big-budget Bollywood films including Cheeni Kum, Saheb, Biwi Aur Gangster 3, Joker among others and will be seen in Rajkummar Rao, Janhvi Kapoor and Varun Sharma starrer Roohi that just got released in theatres yesterday. Last seen in the web series Aarya, Alexx talks about the film and his journey as a musician. Excerpts:
Tell us about your character in Roohi?
I play a filmmaker who chances upon three gentlemen in a village who are introduced to the supernatural realm by Janhvi. The audience will relate to my character more because it gives an outsider’s perspective.
This is your first horror-comedy and your third film with Rajkummar Rao. Tell us about your experience?
My last comedy film was Joker (2012) with Akshay Kumar and Sonakshi Sinha. It’s fun working in comedy and horror-comedy films, the energy is different. Rajkummar Rao and I did Chittagong together and then Bose. In the last few films, I have been trying to kill Rajkummar’s characters and it’s a great change to be his friend on screen, finally! Varun and Janhvi are both very talented and it was amazing working with them all.
Are you a fan of the horror genre?
No! I am not! (laughs) I am among the ones who hide their faces behind their palms when a spooky scene is shown on screen. I try not to watch horror films because they keep playing in my mind. I watched The Rain and the scenes still haunt me.
You have mostly played the role of an outsider in Indian films but you still have been quite versatile. How did you do that?
I have been very careful to avoid being typecast. I think it’s truly upon the actor to take that decision. I have really worked hard and tried not to be just part of the scenery. And I have maintained the same momentum in my upcoming projects.
You have acted in many Bengali films. What are the other upcoming projects?
I am currently working on Golondaaj with Dev. Also, I will be working on another film with Srijit Mukherji.
Post singles like Still on My Mind and A Bhagwad Gita what can we expect from you?
I released Still on My Mind during the lockdown and A Bhagwad Gita, post-Aarya. Music to me is like opening a diary for the audience. In films, I am playing someone else’s sketched character but with music, it’s all me. My next song will be released in April.