Deepak Dobriyal has created a space for himself in Bollywood, but it didn’t happen in a day. It was a long journey, full of struggle and hard work. He started his acting career in 1994 with theatre.

Deepak Dobriyal awaits the response to his latest film Kuldip Patwal: I Didn’t Do It!, released on Friday (February 2)

In an interview to thestatesman.com, Deepak shared his experiences in his 15-year-long journey, why talent recognition matters more to him and why he doesn’t consider anyone as his competitor in the film industry.

Excerpts:

When did you decide to take up acting as a career option? 

All my friends were doing journalism course and learning the language, and I had no clue what to do. Then one day, a few senior boys were doing a play, I participated in the play of Sareshwar Dayal Saxena. Then I went to Mandi House and there I got to know what real theatre is. I used to enjoy there because the area is all about art, culture, and galleries. Gradually, I started taking part in theatre there.

It is very difficult for an actor to switch from one role to other for different films; how did you manage to come over and differentiate between the roles?

It is all about how you explore the role that has been given to you. When a new role is allotted to you, you need to forget all your past characters and explore the new one to make the best. You should give all your mannerism, body language, way to that character. If you will not forget your past character you won’t be able to understand the character you are working on.

Be it Omkara, Maqbool or Kaalakandi, you have always impressed everyone with your acting, Is there anything special you do to do justice to your characters? 

It’s just your dedication; I don’t think before entering into the role; what will happen or not; how will I look in this role. I just get involved in the role. Secondly, I see the physicality of the character like what is the routine style of him, this thing brings a lot of change in your physicality. Then comes emotion, moods. Your heart and body also play an important role in the preparation of your character.

What is the kind of feeling when your acting is appreciated?

That feeling is amazing. The thing that makes me proud is the vision and views of the viewers. I did one scene in Gulal and people loved it. I was sitting at a coffee house when a couple came over to me and appreciated the role. That made me proud. The impact of my roles on my viewers motivates me.

You started your journey 15 years back as an outsider; will you like to share how difficult is it for an outsider to do well in the film industry?

Your work should be your utmost priority. If you do your work with passion, full involvement, dedication without any laziness and tantrums, nobody can stop you. For the upcoming generation, your work should not be secondary even if you have to back. Continue striving for excellence through hard work.

What matters to you the most Awards or the box-office numbers?

Box-Office is a very big need. I used to think the box office is only for commercial films but small films can also earn from it. Tanu Weds Manu was also a small film but it did well at box office. If films don’t earn money then people will stop investing?  So, I will stick to both box-office and awards. Awards are in the hands of the jury, so you can’t predict.

You did a memorable role in ‘Tanu Weds Manu‘, but before that, you did many serious roles. Before signing TWM, did you realize you will try hands at different roles? 

We have to break the monotony of our roles and leave many scripts. You need to stand for yourself that you want to do this or not. Stand for yourself in selecting the role you wanna do. You should never sign a film in a hurry.

2017 was very special for you, Hindi Medium and Lucknow Central did extremely well. Will you like to share something?

Yes, from Hindi Medium I have received lots of love even more than what I did for Tanu Weds Manu. I received a lot of respect and there was an emotional connection with people.

Any director with whom you would like to work in future projects?

I would definitely like to work with Saket Chaudhary and Akshat Verma. These two are my favorite directors.

Would you like to share anything about Kuldip Patwal? 

It is a mystery drama and a political thriller. It’s all about today’s scenario.The mystery starts when a murder happens and Kuldip gets caught in a political drama.

What are your views on Padmaavat controversy?

I have no clue about the controversy. I don’t know how to play up in controversies. Till now I have not seen the movie. For this, I really have to take help from my dear friend Swara Bhasker. Or I will stay away from all this.

Any suggestions you would like to give to the aspiring actors?

Just focus on your work and make it a priority. Do it will full dedication and passion.