Sushant Singh Rajput’s Sonchiriya co-star Manoj Bajpayee has said that he had achieved nothing till the age of 34, which is how old Sushant was when he died last week. Manoj also said that he will always remember Sushant as a man who embraced his small-town origins.
The actor, who will star in Bhosle next, told Pinkvilla in an interview, “All of us have our highs and lows and emotions. Sushant was no different. I don’t think I am as talented as that. I don’t think I am as intelligent and as bright as he used to be. I don’t think I had achieved anything till the age of 34, what he achieved, as compared to his achievements. I feel that my achievements are very very small. That is how I remember him. I don’t remember him not only as a good human being.”
He added, “I remember him as somebody who came from Patna and carried the rootedness with him with all the dancing abilities, with all the coolness and charming smile. He was a small-town guy inside. There was a small town Patna boy inside him. That I used to relate quite a lot.”
In an earlier conversation with filmmaker Shekhar Kapur, Manoj had recalled stories of working with Sushant on Sonchiriya. “My mind is not leaving the image of him on the first day, coming to me and suddenly touching my feet. All the perceptions that people were floating about him, that one gesture of his just questioned everything. Not that he touched my feet…it just says so many things about his background, where he came from,” he said.
Sushant’s death has reignited the debate on Bollywood nepotism, with many of his fans claiming he was ostracised by the gatekeepers of the film industry. Manoj said the solution is to ‘look inwards’. He told Pinkvilla, “When I spot a talent, I encourage the talent. I think we should start using our privileges to help talents. Make talents feel you are welcomed. Make everyone in the industry feel that all of us are one fraternity. It can’t be insider and outsider. ‘Who started this?’ ask that question.”
Follow @htshowbiz for more