There's sweetness to Nani, Allu Arjun has Swag, says Angad Bedi

Bollywood actor Angad Bedi is riding high on the success of his Tollywood debut, Hi Nanna. In an exclusive interview with Deccan Chronicle, the actor heaps praises on Nani and Allu Arjun. Excerpts:

Tell us about your Telugu debut and your role in the movie

I am very excited about my debut and I feel that as an actor, no matter what your body of work has been in the past, when you venture into a new industry, and you speak a different language, which is extremely new to you, you are always vulnerable and nervous. An actor-filmmaker’s relationship is always of a child and a parent. I felt that the parenting through Shourya as my filmmaker was wonderful. He gave me a lot of confidence and he believed in me. And I genuinely believe that sometimes certain things are meant for you. And that's how they find their way. I have done my best with Hi Nanna and I have put my most sincere foot forward. I put my heart and soul into this character.

How did Hi Nanna happen?

Somebody I had done a few digital works with told me that there was somebody in the South trying to reach me for six months. I immediately got on a call with the filmmaker. And we had our first induction meeting, which went pretty well. And he was in the midst of shooting Hi Nanna. He had already shot ten days of the film. He delayed the shoot for a bit, did that induction call with me the next day and gave me a narration. I agreed to do the film. He asked if I wanted to hear my part. I said ‘your story is fabulous, so my part will be the same. Also, it was about working with Nani Garu. I've seen his work, I have seen his Dasara and Jersey. He's a wonderful actor, a friendly warm human being, very interactive, and lovely camaraderie on set.

Tell us about Nani's working style.

He is very invested not invested in a scene, but also in every character and their performance. He likes to watch takes. And, he's got a point of view. He is a team man, not an individualist. When you're a team person, you think for everybody, you think for the entire scene, you think for the actors in the scene. So what happens is, he's a good captain of the ship. Obviously, the captain of the ship is the filmmaker. But Nani garu understands cinema. He understands the emotion of Telugu audience. He knows what to tweak. He knows how other actors can tweak it for the betterment of the scene. So his inputs are pretty bang on.

Tell us about your favorite Telugu actor and your favorite Telugu movie

I love Allu Arjun. He's cool, stylish and swag. I like actors who display swag. Allu Arjun is my most favorite for sure. There's a certain sweetness and niceness to Nani, which I really liked. But swagger like Allu Arjun, I just feel he was brilliant, like Pushpa was something else.

From Bollywood to Tollywood, did you notice any change in the style of filmmaking?

Telugu filmmakers have a very good commercial sense and know how to make an urban story, yet make it massy. They make sure they tick all the boxes as far as mass appeal is concerned. They know how to turn a niche story into a draw at the box office. They know what the audience pallete is and feed them accordingly. They handle it extremely intelligently. Their vision and foresight are good. In Hindi, we have niche films, commercial films, romance, drama, we have parallel cinema, we have short films etc. Like here, we could make a film, which could be an hour long, which could not have the commercial ability, but it could get a lot of critical acclaim. But over there, they look at storytelling get critical acclaim, but at the same time, it should be viable commercially. So they draw a fine balance, which is very interesting.

How was it working with Mrunal Thakur, since you have already worked with her

It's wonderful. She's funny. I like her sense of humor. She's spontaneous, we get along well. Success changes people. But in her case, she's still the same girl I knew from Lust stories. And she's still the same even after Sita Ramam and Hi Nanna. I hope we get to collaborate one more time and I hope she still stays the same.

Talking about Lust Stories, what is your take on modern day relationships?

I feel life has become a 30-45 second reel. With life moving at such a brisk pace, relationships require time, nourishment, understanding and nurturing. In a fast paced life, relationships tend to suffer. You should make yourself the priority, but you should understand that relationship with your partner could be vulnerable. Sometimes, you have to devote time and be a good listener. You have to listen to respond and not react. I feel these are wonderful dynamics in a relationship. And we are all part of a rat race, where we are nothing but the rat. So sometimes you got to take two steps back to take four steps forward and understand that if you're only at peace with yourself, will you be at peace with your partner. Compartmentalize and prioritize are the two things that a modern day man or a woman need to do because relationships are delicate and vulnerable. So you need to invest accordingly.

Neha and you dish out major couple goals, what's your advice to young couples in the industry?

I just feel you got to be yourself, always be the boyfriend- girlfriend you were when you started. Husband-wife, parents, are milestones you will hit. But you should always have that energy to carry that magic of first love of the first attraction along with you forever. I never treat Neha as my wife. She's always been my friend first. I feel that once you have a friend in your partner, it becomes a lot easier.

What's your opinion on celebrities putting their life out there on social media?

I think it’s each to their own. Today, people are invested in celebrities and their personal lives. And I think we're going through a phase, which is good and bad. Rani Mukherjee said something very interesting on Koffee with Karan. She said that the reason she's not on social media is because then she has to put out everything about her life because that is a requirement on social media. Then she'll owe it to the audience to show her personal life. And if you're not getting into that space, then what good is it? Which is a quite a fair point. How I handle it is that I don't take it seriously, I have fun on my page. The only thing that we protect is our children. Because right now, I don't think they have an understanding as to what social media is because they're really small. People take pressure of posting, I don't. But it is here to stay. It's the way of the world, you got to move forward with it.

This is about your recent gold medal in the 400-meter race at the Open International Masters 2023 Athletics Championship in Dubai, which was a prestigious moment. Your father was also a sporting legend. So were you not under any pressure to follow the same path because you chose sprinting and not cricket?

My father was very proud of my films like Pink, Inside Edge, Gunjan Saxena. He loved Ghoomer. He really loved and enjoyed the action in Tiger Zinda Hai. He's seen different kinds of work I've done. He really enjoyed seeing me do action as a police inspector. I think everybody has their own journey. But sports did give me discipline, a great background and understanding of life. A lot of my emotions are attached to sport. I will always carry this discipline with me wherever I go, no matter how old I get. And I feel that it gives you a purpose. It was my father's dream to see me run fast and compete in track and field. He said, I've seen your body of work. When asked if there's one thing left, that he would like me to do, he said, run fast. So I said okay and trained for a year and a half. And I hoped you would be around to see me compete and promised to take him. Unfortunately, that is the only thing that didn't happen. But I'm sure he saw the race from up above.

Tell us about your future projects

This has been a good good year, I've had three releases and very fortunate as an actor to end the year on a good note. December is a very special month with my debut in Telugu cinema and Telugu is big with mass audience all over the world and Nani is a very big star and I just feel that he justifies box office very well. Moving forward,I hope there'll be many more surprises, films to shoot, projects to do. I want to end the year on a good note because the year has been a blessing as far as work is concerned, but also challenging as far as my personal life is concerned. And there's been also a loss. And I just feel that I will spend some time with my family, just be with each other, reminisce the year gone by and take good from it and move forward.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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