MUMBAI: Nawazuddin Siddiqui, the actor in the news for two of his films Gangs Of Wasseypur and Miss Lovely in the competitive sections at the Cannes film festival,is in seventh heaven. He is suddenly the toast of the French seaside town with filmmakers from the worldover showing interest in his work.
Nawazuddin is dazed by the Cannes experience.“It is all so new to me, like a dream. Back home I am still struggling to establish myself in the Hindi film industry. The kind of cinema I do doesn’t get much of an audience at home. Hopefully that will change after Gangs Of Wasseypur.”
The 6-hour two-part Gangs Of Wasseypur was shown as one film at Cannes. And Nawazuddin was stunned.
“It was an experience that I’ve never gone through, and I’ll never forget. Back home they don’t take actors like me seriously. In Bollywood I am not a star. The focus is on people who sell. Here in Cannes the audience that came to see Wasseypur was genuinely interested in watching a different kind of film from India. They watched both the parts of Gangs Of Wasseypur stretching into nearly 6 hours with a 15-minute break between the two films.And then they asked so many really important questions about the film. I felt my career was worth all the struggle that I’ve been through.”
An even bigger ovation awaited Nawazuddin when Ashim Ahluwalia’s Miss Lovely was screened.
Says the actor, “The film doesn’t have any background music. And it is set in Mumbai film industry in the 1970s.And yet the audiences in Cannes have connected with the film. All of us from the film were flooded with questions.”