Interviews ...

“I will always count Tarla as one of the most special films of my career” – Sharib Hashmi

Sharib Hashmi is the kind of actor who stands out even in a cameo appearance. In his eventful career as an actor so far, Sharib has played several memorable roles. His leading part in ‘Tarla’, however, is one of the best-written roles played by him so far. The film dropped on Zee5 a couple of days back and the actor has been getting congratulatory messages for his heart-warming portrayal of Nalin Dalal in the biopic.

In this interview, Sharib talks about the kind of feedback coming his way post the release of ‘Tarla’, why it will always be a special film for him, the massive commercial success of ‘Zara Hatke Zara Bachke’, winning an award for a negative role, the love ‘Afwaah’ has been getting post its digital release and more.

Ever since ‘Tarla’ released, you have been getting a lot of appreciation for your portrayal of Nalin Dalal. Many are of the opinion that One of the best written characters played by you. What has been your biggest takeaway from playing Nalin Dalal?

My biggest takeaway from playing Nalin Dalal is that one should respect their partner’s dreams and support them in everything they wish to do. When they become successful, you also succeed. Renu Dalal ma’am, who is Tarla ji’s daughter, watched the film and told me, “You portrayed my father beautifully”. Getting a compliment like this from Nalin ji’s and Tarla ji’s daughter was a huge thing for me.

There is not much information available on Nalin Dalal online. What is the kind of research and preparation you had to do to portray him on-screen?

Piyush Gupta, who has written and directed the film, had done adequate research. That made my job much easier. He had written the character in a very detailed manner. He had met the family and spent a lot of time speaking to them and doing research. After reading the script, which was meticulously written, I was barely left with any questions in my mind about the character. Tarla Dalal ji’s family had come to the shoot a couple of times.

They were extremely sweet and encouraging. I did have discussions with Piyush about I should interpret the character. People had seen Tarla ji on TV and had an image of her. She was a public figure. However, most of them were not familiar with Nalin Dalal ji. This gave us the liberty to interpret him in a certain way. Physically, I don’t resemble him at all. Sometimes, when you try too hard to make an actor look like a person who had existed in real life, things, get spoilt. So, we refrained from doing that. I tried to maintain the essence of his traits and characteristics.

The film also shows how we don’t give homemakers enough credit for what they do.

Yes! Some people tend to think that a homemaker or a housewife doesn’t do much. However, a homemaker is responsible for building a home. They manage the house and ensure things run smoothly. It’s a full-time job.

Where does ‘Tarla’ sit in your filmography?

I will always count ‘Tarla’ as one of the most special films of my career. I could relate to Tarla ji and her journey and that’s one of the reasons why doing this film proved to be a special experience for me. In the film, she says, “mujhe kuch karna hai, par woh kuch kya hai mujhe pata nahin hai”. It took her a while to realize that she has a penchant for cooking and this is one skill that could give her a purpose in life. Even I realized very late that acting is my calling. There is no expiry date for discovering your talent. Tarla ji had a very supportive husband. In my journey, my wife supported me a lot. I had been wanting to play a family man for a very long time. With this film, I got the opportunity to play a middle-class family man. Working on ‘Tarla’ has been one my most fulfilling experiences as an actor. My look in the film is actually inspired from my father whom I lost a few years back. We tried different looks for the character. When we tried the pencil moustache look, we realized it was working well for the father. I also got a little emotional as it reminded me of my father. Just like him, I was wearing high-waist trousers in the film.

The film was produced by heavyweights like Ronnie Screwvala, Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari, Nitesh Tiwari. Did you get to interact with them while working on the film?

I got the opportunity to interact with each of the three producers. I got a love from them. I remember this particular meeting with Ronnie (Screwvala) sir during the screening of ‘Mission Majnu’. At that time, he had seen a cut of ‘Tarla’. He told me that he really liked and was appreciative of my performance.

Piyush Gupta had co-written the film along with Gautam Ved. As a director, ‘Tarla’ was his first feature film. How was the experience of working with him?

When Piyush narrated the script to me, I was overwhelmed. He had written it beautifully. It was a privilege for me to be a part of a film like ‘Tarla’. Apart from being a talented director, he is an incredible writer as well. He was extremely prepared on the sets and knew how to get the best out of the actors. I hope to work with him again soon.

There was a lot of chatter in the industry about how smaller or medium-budgeted films will no longer draw the audience to the theatres. ‘Zara Hatke Zara Bachke’ defied all those notions and emerged as a major box-office success. Your performance as Daroga ji received a lot of appreciation.

I feel so happy to see the film getting so much love from the audience. Although my entry happens after the interval, the character has a well-defined graph and I got to perform both humorous and emotional scenes. It’s been a few weeks since the film released but I am still getting messages from the audience. I am truly grateful for director Laxman Utekar and casting director Vaibhav Nishant for making me a part of the film. It was my first film with Maddock Films. It was also the first time I worked with Vicky (Kaushal) and Sara (Ali Khan).

Recently, you won an award for Best Actor in a Negative Role for Vikram Vedha. While one has mostly seen you playing positive role, you did play a few negative roles recently in films like ‘Helmet’ and ‘Afwaah’.

For the first time, I was happy to be called ‘negative’ (laughs). I had worked very hard for the character of Bablu Bhaiya in Vikram Vedha. After the film started streaming on an OTT platform, I have been given a lot of interesting feedback on my performance. Years back, I had won the ‘Best Actor In a Comic Role’ award for ‘Filmistaan’. That was the first ever award I had won as an actor. Later, I won a ‘Best Actor In a Supporting Role’ award for ‘The Family Man’. Now, I have won an award for a negative role. I hope to win an award in every category (laughs).

‘Afwaah’ got a very limited release in theatres. Recently, it started streaming on Netflix a couple of days back.

The film gave me one of the most challenging roles of my career. The film has been getting a very good response ever since it started streaming online. Mukesh Chhabra bhai had given me a brief about the character. I was not sure how important this character would be. However, when I read the entire script, I was blown away. Working with Sudhir Mishra sir was an incredible experience. Through this film, he helped me reach my maximum potential as an actor. It was also the first time I got the opportunity to work with Nawaz bhai.

Disclaimer: This story is auto-aggregated by a computer program and has not been created or edited by filmibee.
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