Exclusive! Dulquer Salmaan on stepping into father Mammootty's shoes for his biopic: I won't do it

We had met Dulquer Salmaan a few days before his film’s release and he was evidently overwhelmed with the whirlwind round of promotions that is the norm in Bollywood, but is quite new for someone who belongs to a regional film industry. However, Dulquer seems to be adjusting rather quickly to the rat race. Currently riding high on the critical acclaim that his recent release, Karwaan, is garnering, Dulquer seems busy trying to take it all in. His Instagram stories, post the release of the film, are all about thanking everyone for the kind words that are certainly going to help his film’s prospects at the ticket windows. While we told you earlier how he was missing Irrfan during the promotions of the film, his social media stories all feature the actor rather prominently. Here are some excerpts from the interview that we thought you might find interesting. Read on…

The actor might only be making his debut in the industry but he is certainly no newbie and he made that absolutely clear at the very beginning of the interview. “It has been a six year journey in films now and Bollywood is just a new destination. I have been very lucky to have got the opportunity. So I don’t see it as a debut per se but like an opportunity that I have got and now am making the most of,” reiterated Dulquer. (Also read: Exclusive! Dulquer Salmaan on Karwaan: If Irrfan sir was here, it would have added so much to the promotions)

But certainly the manner in which the two industries function can’t be the same. Ask him to compare and he points out, “This is the biggest. And it is all very corporate here…they are very organised, the teams here are bigger and it is always very well managed. They are also very quicker…Karwaan is one of my quickest films…we shot for it in 34 days where as a normal film takes at least an average of 55 to 60 days. Avinash (Arun), our DOP was so quick! Usually when we can a scene we go and sit in the vanity van, waiting for the next shot to be called, but for this before we could rest our bottoms on the chair, he would be back with the next shot. Over there (in the Malayalam film industry), we have smaller teams so a lot of times the departments overlap and everyone does everything.”

His film, O Kadhal Kanmani was remade in Hindi and called OK Jaanu. Ask him if he has watched it and he says, “I haven’t seen it entirely…I have seen it in parts. But I genuinely get excited when my film is remade. However, on my own, I don’t like remakes…I had decided that very early on in my career, that there will be things that I will stick to and things I won’t do. I had also decided that I won’t do bilinguals but the landscape has changed and there are so many industries opening up.” (Also read: Dulquer Salmaan’s Karwaan of fans will make any actor damn jealous – watch video!)

The web space is the next big thing and every actor worth their salt is trying their hand at something different and exciting to cater to their fans who are on the medium. Dulquer is no different. “I thoroughly loved Sacred Games and I loved the kind of freedom it gave in terms of time. I have had a film where the first cut of the film was four-and-a-half hours and we had to cut it down to two-hours-forty five minute, which is scathing. So it was like…40 days just wasted. It hurts because you get attached to certain scenes. Like Bangalore Days was so long it could have been three different films,” explains Dulquer.

And lastly, considering that his father is an actor too and he has grown up in a film family, we ask him as to how much is he influenced by him and he admits, “Everything he does, he does it with a certain level of integrity. So that’s always a big inspiration.” And will he star in a biopic on his father, if ever one was made? “I won’t do it. I don’t know who should do it but it certainly won’t be me. I think I will be too biased,” quips the actor.

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