Chit Chat

Sonu: Tollywood is way more professional than Bollywood

On his recent visit to the city, Sonu Sood spoke to us about his special memories of Indore and his struggling days as an actor in Bollywood

Punjabi munda Sonu Sood, who started his movie career with South films and made a mark in Bollywood with Singh is Kinng and Dabangg, admits that for an outsider like him, establishing a foothold in Hindi cinema was not a bed of roses. He also believes that even those who are superstars now, would have faced rejection at some point in their life, as ‘it is easy to find God than films in Bollywood’.

Indore is a second home to me
Going gaga over the city’s development and its delicious food, Sood says Indore is quite close to his heart. “Although, I belong to Punjab but Indore is like my second home. I have spent some of the best days in this city. Some wonderful memories still run fresh in my mind. This city is really special to me. From gorging on spicy chaat and kulfis at Sarafa, to learning to drive a scooter, Indore is close to my heart. I know the streets, I know the culture and I take pride in carrying a part of this city wherever I go. I lived here as a teenager and I’m surprised with the kind of transformation that it’s undergoing. Though the city is on the list to be the next happening metropolitan, people here are still the same. No tantrums and nakhras… Indoreans are full of life,” he says. The actor likes to spend quality time whenever in Indore and does masti with his old gang of friends. “Whenever there’s a call for some visit to Indore from my friends or family in the city, I try not to miss it. Coming here for the promotions of my film is okay, but I try and keep my personal visits discreet so that I can roam around the city with my buddies, without worrying about fans or media frenzy. My trips to Indore help me in charging my battery for the tough life in Mumbai,” he adds.

Tollywood is way more professional than Bollywood
“When I started working down South, I was quite amazed with the kind of professionalism they had while working on a film. Whether you’re an established star or a newcomer, you’re expected to be on time and work as per the director’s instructions. The films are completed according to the schedule and released on time,” he says. And he clearly points out the difference in cinematic approach of both the film industries. “Bollywood is more chilled out when it comes to adhering to a certain timeline. But the trend is changing, both in terms of content and the pattern of working. The huge investments can also be attributed as one of the prime reasons behind it. Bollywood is trying to imitate Tollywood now to ensure box-office success. Imagine one hero hitting 50 gundas in a go, and the audience, both in multiplexes and single screens paying five hundred bucks to watch this practically impossible stuff. So it clearly indicates, that after a long and tiring day, people just want to be entertained,” he points out.

I learnt from my mistakes
Life was not easy for Sood, who was a total outsider with no filmy connection. But he took rejection in his stride and learnt from his days as a struggling actor. “Not belonging to any star family and being a complete outsider in Bollywood, I have of course gone through my share of struggle. But as they say, nothing’s impossible, I have come out of that phase. Yes, it took me time to taste success, but I’ve learnt a lot from those tough days. My films didn’t work in the beginning. That time, more than satisfying the actor in me, I was looking for some work, or some kind of recognition. Now, more than stardom, I strive to improve my acting skills, which can only happen if I do sensible roles. Post Singh is Kinng, Jodhaa Akbar and Dabangg, I have been a lot choosier, and I guess that is how it’s meant to be. My progress has been slow but very steady. Actors, who entered the industry during the same time as I did, are nowhere to be seen today. It’s easy to find God than to find work in Bollywood! Even if you’re a superstar, you won’t be spared from the cut-throat competition. I am working on Prabhu Deva’s project – Ramaiya Vasta Vaiya with Shruti Hassan and Rambo Rajkumar with Shahid (Kapoor) and Sonakshi (Sinha). In short, life’s pretty good,” he says.

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