Telugu actor Harshvardhan Rane speaks on starting his Bollywood journey with ‘Sanam Teri Kasam’
Actor Harshvardhan Rane who is just 10 films old in Tollywood has recently forayed into Bollywood with his debut film ' Sanam Teri Kasam' which released on February 5.
Furthermore, the actor’s Telugu film 'Maaya' will be remade in Hindi as ‘Murder 4’ and filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt has announced that he will be producing it.
Harshvardhan who started his career in Mumbai as Rummy Gaur in a popular Hindi television soap 'Left Right Left' co-starring Rajeev Khandelwal, shared his debut experience, his struggle and other thoughts in a chat with The News Minute.
Having worked only in Tollywood, how did you bag your first Hindi film?
When I was working in Hyderabad I got a call from Mumbai for the movie 'Sanam Teri Kasam', but for two and half months, I couldn't visit Mumbai, and by the time I reached Mumbai, the casting was already done.So I told them that I have read the script and I really connect with the character and this film completely belongs to me and I also showed them a video of mine which they loved very much.
Within two days, the poster was about to be released but still they chose me as they were blown away by my video. And I am glad that I insisted them to watch my video, otherwise this film would have been gone because after two days they were going to shoot the film.
Tell us about 'Sanam Teri Kasam'? Your movie has already made 4.55 crores on the first weekend itself, so how does it feel?
I am very happy with the response for the movie on social media, even big stars like Amitabh Bachchan sir have tweeted about 'Sanam Teri Kasam' and it was a great thing for a beginner like me. I am really overwhelmed with the response and reviews of the movie. I am really glad that everyone just loved the character.
What made you start your career with a soap in 2008? Were you following King Khan and did he inspire you?
I was not exactly following anyone but as a newcomer there was no one to advise me or people like us. I really get inspired by self-made men like Shahrukh sir. So even I thought of starting my career with army soaps like Shahrukh sir did in his career. And I also got recognition with the Hindi television soap 'Left Right Left'.
Your co-star said in an interview that 'Sanam Teri Kasam' is not a story about dating or boyfriend-girlfriend issues. It has far too much depth, is this a classic love story which is not seen these days in any of the movies. Don't you think Bollywood is missing classic love stories these days?
Exactly, as many of them wrote to me that they are watching this kind of classic love story after a long time. Monday collections were equal to Friday collections so obviously people are watching the movie as they are liking it. I think what Marwa said is correct, I too feel that people are getting to watch such movies after a long time.
You have acted with Pakistani actress Mawra Hocane in this movie. How was your experience working with her? Your chemistry is being appreciated a lot in the movie?
Yes, everyone is talking about our chemistry in the movie and it's great to perform with her. I am very lucky to get a co-actress like Mawra Kocane, she is a blessed girl. The way she looks suited the character very much. She compliments the other actor. She does everything with a lot of passion and we really did a lot of hard work for the movie.
Recently there was big debate on intolerance in India, Shiva Sena protests led to the cancellation of Pakistani ghazal singer Ghulam Ali’s performance in India. So after working with a Pakistani actress, what do you have to say about such things? Did you face any issues with your film as you had a Pakistani co-star?
I cannot comment on this because I have only read about this issue on my phone and also none of these things I have experienced in real life, so I really can't comment. Luckily, we haven't faced any such issues with our movie, everything went off smoothly and we also had a peaceful release.
What made you support People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) campaign against animal abuse, especially towards elephants?
I think a lot of us don't know that elephants go through a lot of pain just to give us a joyride, which is not at all joyful for the animal. People don't understand and they think they are having fun but they should see the blood marks on the elephant after a joyride. They are forced to behave in a certain way and undergo torture just to give pleasure to a few people.
I think when people will see videos of their torture, they will definitely stop taking joy-rides on these animals. Even I was not aware about this thing but when PETA showed me the videos, I decided that I will never ever go for a joyride because it is a magnificent animal and we should learn to respect it. We need to learn and we should create awareness regarding this, and we should not harm the animals.
Do you think Baahubali has created history in Indian Cinema?
Absolutely it has created history. I would personally like to thank Rana Daggubati for giving so many chances to Telugu actors in Bollywood. The new generation knows Telugu actors only because of his movies and his appearances. And Baahubali is doing really well and audiences have really appreciated the movie. I would love to act in Baahubali but I guess the casting is already done. So I personally thank Rana for opening new horizons for Telugu actors in Bollywood.
Do you think it is time Tollywood changes how it portrays women? Do you feel that something should be done to ensure that women are not mere props in Telugu movies?
I don't think women are mere props anymore in the industry. When I entered the industry, I saw Arundhati and I was really impressed by Anushka's role. Nowadays, there are so many posters in which actresses are more prominent than actors. So many titles are dedicated to women and many men are doing women-oriented roles. Actors like Anushka Shetty, Laxmi Manchu have done many women-oriented films with superb characters.
Being a self-made actor, what kind of difficulties have you faced to sustain yourself in the industry?
If it was easy, I would have never come here as I love difficulties. For me, life is fun only if it is difficult. The only difference is that when you are from a movie background, they will put so much pressure on you and make so many comparisons.
In the south, actors have to continue their father’s legacy and they have to maintain the family name. The only benefit I have is that I don't have to answer to anyone because I don't have a family name to maintain.
So Valentine's Day is approaching? Do you have any plans for that day?
So this Valentine, I'll spend it with my Valentine 'DJANGO' my Jeep. You all know that I am single for the past 8 years and I have no time for Valentine's Day, as I am very busy with my work. My work is my Valentine and my Jeep is my Valentine.
So what kind of movies are you planning to do in future? Any Bollywood and Tollywood projects you are doing now?
My only aim is to improve with every film. As I am not from a movie background, no one is there to guide me. So my only aim is to improve with every film I do. When I do a film, I watch it and I learn from the film. If you observe my work, you will always feel that my latest film is always better than the previous one. Though it’s a slow process, I feel it helps me get better with every film.