‘People still know me as Rishi from Wake Up Sid’

‘People still know me as Rishi from Wake Up Sid’

The actor's latest release is a short film where he plays a station master

Namit Das is an actor who made his debut with the television series ‘Pancham’ in 2004. His claim to fame came with his role as Rishi in Ayan Mukerji’s ‘Wake Up Sid’. He has since been a part of several projects such as ‘Pataakha’, ‘Sui Dhaaga’, and ‘Sumit Sambhal Lega’. His latest release ‘Station Master Phool Kumar’ is a short film that is part of ‘Offbeats’, a six film anthology series by the YouTube channel Gorilla Shorts. In a chat with Metrolife, the actor spoke about the film, his career and more.

What is it about ‘Station Master Phool Kumar’ that drew you to it?

I really liked the character. I loved the way Ambar had devised it for me. When I met him for the first time he told me that when they wrote the
script they only had me in mind for the role. There is a scarcity of nice themes in the market right now. Everything is either violent or tragic. This story, however, is simple and sweet.

What motivates you to choose a particular project?

I look at the script, firstly. I also look at how effectively I can communicate with the director, the platform on which the project would be put up on and the team I would be working with.

I can’t make a film alone. It is a team effort, so knowing their sensibilities makes it very easy to work. And, of course, the character I have been offered — in terms of his actions and the role he plays in taking the story forward.

‘Station Master Phool Kumar’ is a movie largely focuses on one character. Did that make it more challenging for you?

The shooting processes was like running a marathon all alone. Ambar kept telling me to a hundred things and I just kept doing it in front of the camera. After a point of time, I began wondering why I am doing these things. But, of course, it all added up and came together.

Which movie would you say was the turning point in your career?

There are two. The first was obviously, ‘Wake Up Sid’; people still know me as Rishi. It was just one of those movies, and one of those characters, you know. The second one was ‘Sumit Sambhal Lega’ — our desi version of ‘Everybody loves Raymond’ — where I play Raymond’s character.

You’re also a musician. Do you think you have been able to balance music along with your acting career?

It has been difficult. Right now, the musician that I collaborate with, Anurag Shanker, has been dying to work on the album that we have been promising our audience. But, I have been shooting continuously since last August. I must have spent less than 30 days in Mumbai, in fact. So, right now, my music is waiting. When I am in the right mind space, I will do it.

Any project you wish you were a part of?

No, I don’t think like that. I have been very happy with whatever I have been a part of until now. I think those were some of the best projects and characters.

Even smaller roles, such as my guest appearance in ‘Humari Adhuri Kahani’; people still come and compliment me for my performance. I have been lucky that way.

What will we be seeing you next in?

A web series called ‘Mafia’ will be releasing on ZEE5. You will be seeing me in a movie called ‘Bahut Hua Sammaan’, which is a political comedy drama. There is another web show for a big platform, but that’s all I can say about it at this point. And of course, ‘Suitable Boy’, where I will be playing Harish Khanna, one of the suitors.

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