MUSBA HASHMI chats up actor-host-comedian PARITOSH TRIPATHI about how he came on board for Ludo, whether he imagined playing Manohar Jain and why he doesn’t believe in glorifying his struggle
How did you come onboard for Ludo?
Anurag dada (Basu) offered me the role. Even I was shocked and so I messaged him asking why did he offer the role without even auditioning me. To which he answered, you were giving auditions only in the previous show (Super Dancer 3, where he was a host and Anurag Basu was a judge). To add to this, in that show for about two years, I joked around and said when will I get an offer for a movie. I told dada, that I want to spend more time with him. May be he understood it the other way and when Ludo happened he found a suitable role for me.
Did you ever imagine yourself playing Manohar Jain since you are obviously different from the character?
I am from theatre and trained for playing different types of characters. Comedy and anchoring happened with me by chance. I came to Mumbai to do films and serious roles always excited me. Then I got Crime Patrol and I thoroughly enjoyed being a part of it. To answer your question, this is dada’s vision and if he thinks I can do it, then who I am to question it. Manohar is a very real character and my approach towards it was to not make him look bad or cheap. He is right at his place, he is like a bechara. Also, the credit goes to dada who made me play Manohar so naturally.
A lesson that you took back home from the sets of Ludo.
Every day was a learning experience. There is so much that I took back home from the sets, be it life lessons or some great memories. I even got a lot of compliments from the other actors on sets including Rajkummar Rao. I shared a extremely sweet moment with Pankaj Tripathi. It was last year on the occasion of Holi that we were shooting the hospital scene from the film. Pankaj bhaiyya told me that once they call it a day we will have dinner together. His shoot got finished early and I was still shooting. After the pack-up, while I was going to my van, somebody told me that Pankaj bhaiyya was still waiting for me. It was for about two-three hours, I was touched by that act of his.
In a recent interview, you mentioned you don’t believe in glorifying your struggle. Why is that so?
Whenever we see a person from a small town, the first thought that crosses our mind is: “Aye haye, bechara”. If we talk about reality shows, if a person has an excellent struggle story that doesn’t makes him an excellent performer. It is about one’s talent and not what his story or struggle is. If I belong to a well-to-do family and if I have the talent in me, there is no need to make-up false struggle stories. Main kya karu main gareeb paison se bhi nahin tha aur gyaan se bhi nahin. People like me for my talent and not for my story. It’s a brainchild of TV, to glorify the back stories of the contestants. Whatever struggle I have been through, it was by choice. Coming to Mumbai was my choice and deciding to earn a living for myself was my choice as well. I won’t tell a bechargi wali story just to be in the limelight, that is not me.
What does success mean to you?
Success is when people start listening to your words. Whatever you say, is appreciated and well-understood by audience, is what I call success. Having an expensive car and a big bungalow is not success for me.
You are an actor, host, poet and a comedian too. What does it take to do it all?
One of my friend used to say: Tu fridge bhi theek kar leta hoga. Because I don several hats. But all of this comes under acting only, so it is not a rocket science. Acting is my passion and likhna mere zinda rehne ka saboot hai. Also, I got a lot of projects because I can write as well.