Kunal Kemmu will next be seen in ZEE5 Original web-series Abhay. (Photo: APH Images)
Kunal Kemmu is still garnering praise for his performance in Malang. The actor spoke to indianexpress.com about life after playing Michael Rodriguez in the Mohit Suri directorial.
Here are excerpts from the conversation:
How are you feeling about Malang’s success?
I am very happy it all worked out. The response (the character received) is beyond my expectation. I think a lot of people did not see me in such a role before even though I debuted with Kalyug. People came to me and said, “Hey, I never imagined to see you in a part like this” or “I am so happy to see you in something which is not a comedy and something as dark as this (Malang). You have done it so well.” I guess it (the film) changed filmmakers’ perspective towards me. I am hoping I will be offered a variety of roles now.
Mohit Suri called you an actor with the maturity of a veteran. What would you say?
Mohit and I share a special relationship. He launched me with Kalyug. A director envisions a character, and if he thinks I have done a good job while portraying Michael, I think that is a big compliment for me.
In one of the interviews, you mentioned how Soha was scared to go back home with you after Malang. How does it feel when such kind of validation comes your way?
Soha was the first to share her reaction to the film. She said she really liked my character in the film. She said, “I am scared to go back home with you” (laughed). I think that is one interesting compliment I got.
I have been receiving the same sort of replies or compliments from people on social media. The fact that my character has pushed or urged someone to leave a comment on my post is also one kind of validation. So, of course, as an actor, it feels wonderful.
You have been part of iconic films since your childhood. You literally saw the industry change. Tell us about your journey.
When we enter the industry, it is like sitting on a roller-coaster. You have to embrace the fact that the ride is definitely going to be with filled with ups and downs. There is no actor, director or anyone who has not gone through failure, heartbreaks and all the gloomy emotions. You have to realise that you are not the only one even though the low points are very lonely. But I think all these experiences bring maturity in you as a person and I am no different. I hope to be here and do what I am doing. I have been on sets since the age of seven and really love what I am doing. I want to do this for the rest of my life.
Over the years, Kunal has become synonymous with comedy. Was it bothering you? Also, were you looking for a change?
I would not say worried, but also I wanted to do something else. 90% of the scripts that came my way were comedies. As an actor, I want to do different parts because it is a profession where you get the chance to step into someone else’s life, to live someone’s dream and get into some different profession.
People saw me as an actor who was better at comedy. I also did not purposely go out and say no to comedy films. But I don’t want to do the same thing for the rest of my life because not only me even the audience will get bored.
Is failure or success a matter of discussion between you and Soha?
Of course! She is my partner and friend. When you are going through a bad phase, you need someone to talk to. However, we need to understand that a failure or a success is just a part of our life but not our life. You have to time and again invest in people and family you have.
We see your photos with Inaaya. Tell us how life has been since her arrival.
People used to ask me this question after I got married that how life has changed for me and Soha. Soha and I have been together for eleven years and been married for five, but we did not feel any different. However, life changes a lot after a kid because you plan every day around the little one. Life has changed in a good way. I cannot imagine a life without Inaaya anymore.
You will also be seen in web series Abhay. What can we expect from the second season?
I am very happy and excited that I am getting to play the character again. This season, you would see an ensemble of very interesting actors.
What is the update on Go Goa Gone 2?
I am very excited and cannot wait to go back to the sets, but at this point I would not be able to say anything until the makers make an announcement.
Are you a fan of sequels/franchises?
There are films that are meant to become franchises organically. Some films have one part, but because they become popular, they end up turning into franchises. However, franchises are not always popular.
Golmaal is a franchise that is loved globally and I am happy to be part of it. I look forward to it not only as an actor but also an audience. On the other hand, Go Goa Gone was also written with the intent to become a franchise. It is unfortunate it took such a long time for it to come back. So, let’s see what happens now.