I used to run away from writing before Satya: Saurabh Shukla

Kriti Billore

He stole the heart of millions by portraying ‘Kallu Mama’ in Satya. We all relate to the self styled Godman in PK and a witty and intelligent judge in Jolly LLB. His characters directly influence the audience and with he has truly secured a special place in our hearts. Saurabh Shukla, with his ease and comfortable acting has set a cliché in Bollywood.

The second day of The Great Indian Film and Literature Festival, Bhopal chapter was graced by the presence of this wonderful writer and actor. In a chat session he narrated the untold stories of his life and how he got attached to the world of theatre and acting.

  • Saurabh how do you got involved in the field of art & culture?

I belong to a family who was attached to the field of art. Art is in my blood as my mother is the first-ever lady Tabla player and my father is a musicologist and vocalist. so the interest of art was developed in me because of my family background. We belong to a county where art was not considered as a proper profession. My parents wanted me to educate formally and therefor i completed my education in commerce stream. My parents never stopped me to get involve in this field or restricted me to develop any interest for painting, writing or theatre.

  • How do you developed interest in acting and films?

Earlier as a kid you were not allowed to watch films, but my family was a bit different. Both my parents had a keen interest in films. Every Sunday they use to watch one English film in the morning and one Hindi film in the evening, so 4 films for me every month was fixed. My brother is 10 years elder to me and he was allowed to watch four more films every month and being a younger brother I use to join him in at least 2 films. In total I used to watch 6 films every month.

  • When did you decided to act?

When I was in the 6th standard me and my friends decided to make a movie. I was the most intelligent one in the group and I decided to click photographs for a year and make a movie out of it. This plan never succeeded as it was not a still camera and the photographs were in a form of certain frame. Then once I went to Delhi to saw a theatre show there and that was the time when I decided to act. 

  • How did Bandit Queen happen?

The director of the film Shekhar Kapoor once saw my play and after that he created a role for me in  Bandit Queen and called me to Dhalupur. Firstly I rejected the offer as i had to go to England for a film and also had another film called Little Buddha lined up for me. Due to some reasons i was not able to go to England and was also not able to do the other film also and then accepted Shekhar's offer.

  • What inspired you to became a writer?

Ramu wanted to make a film on underworld and from there came the idea of Satya. Anurag was the co-writer of the film and he called me one day and told me that Ramu wanted to meet me and discuss Satya. I use to runaway from writing and i find it difficult. I was expecting that they had call me for a role but somewhere I had little doubts in my mind about this writing thing. I made my mind to reject the film as I can't write. The next day I meet them and the first line Ramu said was he wanted me do Kallu Mama, then he told me a little bit about the film and then offered me the writing part. I was in a confused sate of mind that if I reject to write the film then they will also snatch the role which I wanted to do. Then I agreed to write. Ramu narrated the plot to me with the decided characters. I was inspired by the Hollywood film Good Fellows and then started writing it and made it look real and normal with no drama. The uniqueness of Satya was we made the profession of a mafia look normal. We made their profession look real. The only difference is that we shoot films they shoot people. 

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