‘Kwatha’ is a big risk for me: Aayush

The actor plays the role of an Army officer in his second film

Aayush Sharma is working with Karan Lalit Butani in his upcoming film.

Actor Aayush Sharma may just be one film old but he is no stranger to the industry. Married to Salman Khan’s sister Arpita Khan, he was launched by the megastar with ‘Loveyatri’ last year. Aayush will next be seen in ‘Kwatha’ in the role of an army officer.

In a quick chat with Metrolife, the actor spoke about his journey in the industry, living in Salman’s shadow and his baby.

You were a part of the ‘Da-Bangg’ tour in Hyderabad recently. Any plans of bringing it to Bengaluru?

This is the first time I performed on the tour. I would love to bring it to Bengaluru! I have never actually visited this place, so to be able to come with this show and perform would be great. This city is definitely an option.

Your next film, ‘Kwatha’, has an intriguing premise. What made you take up this role?

I choose projects only if I like it and want to be a part of it. ‘Kwatha’ is a noble tale of the Indian Army and is based on a true story that unfolded in Manipur. I was intrigued when I heard about it. It is set in a small village called Kwatha in Manipur. Not a lot of people know about the story, and I thought it was important that it is told. Having said that, playing the role of an Army major was interesting. 

Is it intimidating to play an army officer?

Yes, because there are certain boundaries one needs to keep in mind while playing an Indian army officer. There is a certain kind of body language and dialect. It is not a fictional story, so playing the part of someone who is still in service and is an active part of the army was challenging. In addition to that, making sure that the film is entertaining but doesn’t digress from the main issue was difficult. 

This is your second film after ‘Loveyatri’, any learnings from your first film that helped you?

What I learnt from my first film was to take risks; ‘Kwatha’ is a big risk. ‘Loveyatri’ was a fictionalised happy-go-lucky film but this falls under a different genre. After doing ‘Loveyatri’ I knew I wanted to do something different and playing a “chocolate boy” character. I think my last film gave me a lot of confidence as an actor to be able to take up a role like the one in ‘Kwatha’. I understood that today, people enjoy more content-driven movies; I believe ‘Kwatha’ is just that. 

What is the best advice you have received?

It was from my father-in-law, Salim Khan. He once told me, ‘you can never decide the fate of the film, so always choose a film that makes you believe in it and one that you will be happy being a part of forever. Don’t go by the dynamics of how the project is sounding but go by the idea that if it does well then great, and if it doesn’t, you are still proud of the film.’ And that is the advice I follow all the time. 

It must be quite difficult living in the shadow of Salman Khan. How do you deal with that?

I can’t disagree with the fact that it is quite difficult. I can’t disagree with the fact that he is a magnum opus of a person. And it will take a lot of time for me to come out of his shadow. I don’t think it’s an immediate need that I have to get away from his shadow. In fact, I am lucky to have him around me as a mentor and family. I appreciate the positives that come with being related to Salman Bhai. But yes, there are a few times when people don’t credit me for the work I do, saying, it’s only because of Salman that I am where I am. I mean it is right to an extent, he has played a huge role in my success but I believe in hard work. I know that it’s only if I impress the audience, will I be out of his shadow.

Have you always wanted to be an actor?

Not really, when I came to Mumbai, my aim was to finish my graduation. Like every Indian, I have been a big fan of movies. But I never considered myself to be an actor. After I got married, I started assisting films to understand more about them. That’s how my love for films grew. I got to assist big projects and at that point, I felt, I should be part of films too. Now, I can’t imagine myself doing anything else. 

On the personal front, you are expecting your second child with Arpita...

It’s a beautiful time for the whole family, and touch-wood, Ahil, my son has been such a wonderful child.  He has brought so much joy and happiness between me and Arpita. This time around it’s more relaxing because I know I have dealt with one kid, I can deal with the second one as well. 

Any future projects you can talk about?

There are some very exciting projects lined up, but I haven’t got the green light to talk about them. I am excited that all these films are very different from each other. I am happy to be experimenting. 

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