Mardaani’s main attraction is Rani Mukerji, of course. But there is one person who has also grabbed attention and that is the film’s antagonist — Tahir Raj Bhasin. His brooding looks and unconventional screen presence has struck audiences and critics alike. And the boy from Delhi talks about how it all started.
Q We don’t know much about you. How did you walk into the film industry?
I was working as a news journalist earlier. But then, I moved to Mumbai to concentrate on modelling. I have been a part of a few ads and have had small roles in movies like One By Two, Kai Po Che and Kismet Love Paisa Dilla.
Q But now, everyone in the industry knows you. How has the reaction been?
It feels great to get appreciation not only from the audience, but the critics too. Aamir Khan appreciating my role left me astounded yet very happy. My work being applauded by such a great actor means a lot to me. However, this brings in a sense of responsibility. I must credit director Pradeep Sarkar who advised me to portray my role in an utterly cool manner. He told me that I am supposed to look like any boy-next-door.
Q And when did you first meet Rani? How was it working with her?
I first met Rani while she was shooting the ‘phone sequence’. After finishing the scene, she spoke to me and asked me questions like “When is your birthday? What is your take on the role narrated to you? When did you start acting?” She was just trying to make me comfortable. She is a really cool person. We only have one scene together and that’s when she comes to my house. Rani was not only meticulous, but her confidence and the way she enacted the scene, left me spellbound.
Q Are you scared of being stereotyped as a villain?
Not at all. My character has shades of grey as well as that of a normal guy. I am proud of this character.
Q How has life changed and what are your next projects?
Within three days of Mardaani’s release my life changed tremendously. But I still have a long way to go. I have a couple of projects, but I cannot disclose them at this moment. All I can say, is that the offers I received are from good banners. But, I can say I have not signed any ‘three film deal’ with YRF.