If there’s one Bollywood actor who has been around for long enough to know all its flaws, it is none other than Nawazuddin Siddiqui. He is also one actor who has a fan base both in India and abroad and recently made a point about Bollywood. “I want to change the name ‘Bollywood’ itself. Yeh jo udhaar ka naam le rakha hai, sabse pehle humein yeh badalna chahiye,” he recently said.
He also made mention of the peculiarity in actors being recognised only when they are praised in the West or when they are given an award. “This is a fact. A lot of my films would go to international festivals, and even get awards, but when they would release here, they wouldn’t get much response. It’s only when they get the validation from West,” he was quoted as saying by the leading Indian daily, Hindustan Times.
Siddiqui went on to give an example of his recent web film, Serious Men, which received tonnes of praise from critics and audiences and said, “Thank God, we got such a great response but if it hadn’t, we would have thought, ‘Yeh kya ho gaya?’ Then, when it would have got some award in the West, it would have been termed good here too. The validation is needed, especially from the West, and it hasn’t changed,” he asserted.
Nawazuddin Siddiqui has starred in the international show McMafia and The Lunchbox also gained much recognition abroad. He was also questioned about whether he was offered more international projects, to which the actor confessed, “Offers do come but things are just not materialising. Aisa nahi hai ke marra jaa raha hoon, ya thappa lagega unka tab jaake actor kehlaunga. I am not dependent on that, and neither do I want to be. I want my films to go to the West and tell them that we are no less.”
He was then asked whether he thinks Indian film-makers have tapped his full potential? “The kind of work I am getting today, I shouldn’t complain, because that is the kind I want. I am happy and have no complaints. Talent ki kadar bilkul hoti hai, if you are asking about my journey. If not today, then tomorrow, you will have to give your time, if you have passion. Talent is always recognised someday,” the star concluded.