Vivaan Parashar: John Abraham is my mentor

Vivaan Parashar: John Abraham is my mentor

Vivaan Parashar felt like had entered a candy shop watching all the acting stalwarts on the sets of ‘Mumbai Saga’. The debutant not only received a warm welcome from the team of the gangster-drama but also found a mentor in John Abraham. Son of filmmaker Pankuj Parashar, Vivaan opened up to ETimes about his debut in Bollywood after a decade’s experience in acting, landing ‘Mumbai Saga’, working with director Sanjay Gupta, and more. Excerpts:
How did ‘Mumbai Saga’ happen?
It’s a bit of a crazy story, actually. I am a fan of single-screen movies and had made a WhatsApp group with other friends named ‘Mumbai Saga First Day First Show’, to watch the movie together. And then my father told me that director Sanjay Gupta used to intern with him. I got in touch with Sanjay sir and he told me to meet his assistant while adding that most of the roles for ‘Mumbai Saga’ had been cast. I just wanted to meet him because it was a big thing for me. I had done a short film with Naseeruddin Shah sir and dropped it off to Sanjay sir’s team. After much following up, I got a text saying that I have been welcomed into his production house. They had watched my film and also called me for a look test. Finally, a month-and-a-half later, I finally bagged the part. The group is still there, the only difference is that now I am a part of the movie too.


How would you describe Sanjay Gupta as a filmmaker?

I was a little skeptical on the first day because I was the new guy on the sets, while everyone else was an established star. But right from day one, Sanjay sir gave me a lot of freedom to perform. I have a theatre background and understand the importance of a director giving you freedom. He was very clear in his vision and his instructions were also very specific. The entire team treated me as an equal and that gave me a lot of self-belief and confidence.

You belong to John Abraham’s group of gangsters in the movie. How was it working with him?
On the first day, after I had just given my first shot, and was very nervous, John sir just came and sat down with me on the sets. Two ACs were directed towards him because he had just arrived on the sets and it was hot outside. But John sir noticed that I wasn’t in the direction of the vents and adjusted to sit in a way that we both were comfortable. He also introduced himself but I was so shy to be around him! However, he is now my mentor; I keep going to him for advice. It has become a beautiful friendship.

From TV to theatre and now films, how would you define your struggle?

I started my career as a child actor and this is my first big break after 15 years. It has been a tough ride; I was doing auditions, TV episodes, commercials, and a lot of theatre. In life, you need both talent and a little bit of luck. Being at the right place and right time makes a lot of difference. Before ‘Mumbai Saga’ happened, I had been shortlisted for 25 projects in a row, which includes films and ads but I didn’t land those because sometimes a celebrity would get it or the project would not workout. So, it reached a point where I started getting frustrated and even wondered if acting was even meant for me. I had a bit of a breakdown but then ‘Mumbai Saga’ happened. Now I can look at it in a rosy way but there are days when I felt very beat up about it. However, I wouldn’t mind giving up all those 25 projects if someone told me that I would be a part of ‘Mumbai Saga’.


‘Mumbai Saga’ started off with some help from your father. Do you think being an insider makes things easier?
It really depends on a lot of aspects. Just because you are a part of the industry, doesn’t mean you have a passport to enter. Whether an insider or outsider, the two or two-and-a-half hours that you get to perform, the audience should believe whatever you are doing. Nothing else matters. There are so many tales of people coming from outside and making it big in the industry. So, the question is, whether you are well-equipped or not? You need to be true to your craft and use the resources to the best of your ability.
Source From : Times Of India

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