From Amitabh Bachchan’s role as Chai-walla (tea salesman) to ‘Ankhane’, Shreyas Talpade has come a long way in the film industry. In addition to acting in Bollywood, the star has proven his versatility by wearing a producer and director’s hat for Marathi films. Known for his critically acclaimed role as a deaf and dumb boy in Nagesh Kukunoor’s ‘Iqbal’, Pappu Master in Shah Rukh Khan’s ‘Om Shanti Om’ and the humorous Lakshmana in the ‘Golmaal’ series, Shreyas is himself in the industry. Etims got in touch with the actor to learn more about how he was busy during the lockdown, how 2020 treated him and more.

Lockdown diaries

Lockdown is great. Initially, we all thought, ‘
Lockdown Hogaya .. Sub Kharab Ho Gaya‘. But now when I look back, I think it’s good. I got plenty of time to spend with my family. ‘
If this lockdown is not I’m sure, I didn’t spend much time with my daughter and family. Post ‘Unlock’ I did a Hindi film with Rajeev Bhaiya (Rajeev S. Ruya), where I portrayed Benares’ pundit, a Marathi film with Mahesh Manjrekar, where I starred as a lawyer and I also did a web series with Rajeev, where I portrayed Gini. And most importantly, I’ve done a lot of work on my own OTT platform. So overall, I did a lot of work during the lockdown and now I’m just waiting for it to be released.

Best time to spend quality time with family
Initially, there was this whole panic-like scenario. Everyone was saying it would be over in just 15 to 20 days but then the lockdown continued to expand and how. People started attending online classes and learning new languages, choosing some direction courses and whatnot. But one thought came to my mind, when the whole world was closed and we were officially on vacation, enjoy it with your family.

Well learned lesson
I remembered a piece of advice given by Archana Puran Singh. She once said that you should spend as much time with your child as possible. My daughter was very young when we worked together and this phase with your daughter will never go back in your life, ”said Archana. She said, ‘
Maine Apne Bache Ko Chota Sa Dekha Tha …. and kais wo bada ho gaya jaldi se .. pata nahi chala .. muje wo bachpan ka bacha yad hi nahi hai And you lose their childhood, never do so. Be with your baby as much as you can. ”

And her words are true, my daughter’s milestones, crawling, standing, walking and now saying her first words and formulating sentences are a beautiful process,
Abhi Toh Vo Gyan Dene Logi Hai, Progress is just amazing and beyond words. All these things are very appealing to me. In a way, I thank the lockdown.

Idea for launching OTT platform
I received a lot of calls from theater colleagues about the impact of theater people on lockdown. So we thought of doing something that would help them and provide monetary help in the long run. I remember, someone said, ‘If we give money to those in need, they will eat one day and if we give them a job, they will eat for the rest of their lives. So we thought about launching an OTT platform, which is exclusively for theater artists and theaters. So we started working towards it and now we are ready to launch it in January 2021. I am very proud that we ended up employing around 500 people. We talked to the actors, we worked on the scripts and everything. Today we have over 100 hours of ready-made, original, exclusively filmed content for our OTT platform. It is the first forum dedicated to drama and performing arts. You’ll see one-act plays, short plays, skits, stand-up comedy, story reading, documentaries, etc.

Explain 2020 in one sentence
2020 has been one of the most extraordinary years. I wouldn’t say negative or positive but something extraordinary.

If you have something to say this year

I want to thank you. I won’t say goodbye or get lost, but I will thank you. Although the year has been disastrous, I have been gifted with precious memories with my daughter and family. It showed my true potential.

Favorite movie of 2020
Tanhaji- Ansang Warrior.

Favorite costume for 2020

Shorts and T-shirts.

Favorite song of 2020
Songs by Tanhaji-The Unsung Warrior.

Experimental diet of 2020
I am a hardcore non-veg eater but I eat a lot of vegan food.
Toh Nahi cooked kia but I ate bhendi ki sabji It was an experiment for me,

The talent you get in 2020
Aside from being an actor, director and producer, I realized my potential was that I could go into business and become an entrepreneur.

A holiday destination you missed in 2020

London

Big regret / missed in 2020

I missed doing some movies that didn’t happen because of the lockdown. So I missed being part of the film. One is a South Indian film and another is a biography. I hope I will be able to make those pictures in the future.

Resolution of 2021

Be prepared, be prepared

This is a movie you are looking forward to in 2021

‘Golmaal 5’! We announced the film shortly before the lockdown. I think we’ll do it.

Three greetings that you want to hear Genie

1. I want my family to be safe from any such viruses.

2. I want my OTT platform to be the biggest success story

3. I want to be an actor who has done a variety of roles and played different roles.

A life lesson you learned in 2020

We have more potential than we think we have.

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