Making Friends

March 22, 2012 in Uncategorized

         In the year 2004, I had done a play called Evam Indrajit and was done wrapping up the production. For a few weeks I couldn’t find any work to do. I kind of gave up at that point, a friend suggested that there was job at IBM and I could try for that. I decided to do that, my parents were very happy at the decision. So I got up in the morning and was preparing for the interview, and the irony is that, Deccan Herald had published an article about me that very day; they had called me the young boy who was following his dreams. I felt bad but I had no choice but to go for the job interview. As I was getting my formal clothes ironed, I got a call from a complete stranger. He was a man who had retired and he was calling me in regard to the article in the paper. I found the call very strange, he started saying how he is impressed with what I was doing and that he is proud of me, I was simply nodding my head because I had anyway decided to give up. Then he said how as a young boy he always wanted to be an actor, to do theatre, but no one supported him and he got into a job and then family came in etc, and he never got to act or be on stage. After reading the article he felt like someone was living his dream and that is why he called up DH and got my number so that he could speak to his younger version. Before he hung up, he pleaded that I should not give up ever and should live his dream. And that was the end of the conversation. I was shocked. I stopped what I was doing. Thought for a while, and skipped the interview. My parents didn’t like it; there was a big war in the house. I don’t know who that old man was, he never called me again. This is a true story, it really happened to me.

Exactly a month ago, I had written a post called – Making Enemies! Many people from all over the world had read that post. And in just one month things have changed so much that I had to make this post called – Making Friends.

Project Lucia has worked wonders. Now it’s not just a movie, it’s become a movement and the outcome of this movement may change lives for many people (including mine), may change certain process/methods, or may simply prove an existing establishment is right and that I am wrong! It’s an experiment and I think we have just got our first results.

In 27 days, there were 10000+ visits to the Project Lucia page, 602 of those visitors FB – LIKED the page and shared it. And 98 of those visitors blindly trusted the project and come forward to be part of it. None of them know what LUCIA is!

In 27 days we have raised 49 Lakh, all in the name of making a movie called LUCIA! Many movies playing in the theatre don’t earn that much. I am nothing but lucky to have found that special place in the hearts of my audience.

I have had many phases of mad decisions in my 12 years of theatre and films. And with every bizarre idea, I have had strangers coming into my life and supporting me through the madness, helping me in making those ideas workout. Does this happen to all of you?

Some of the instances in my life where I went mad and strangers just came in and took care of it!

Year 2000 – Dreams of acting on stage

Sibu Vaz and gang select me for SPOT 2000, a free theatre workshop which made me realize what I wanted to do in life!

Year 2001 – Starting a Theare Club in PESIT

College friends! Though they were all the toppers in the college, they gave me the position to lead them and helped me make plays every semester, which gave me enough confidence to quit college half way through

Year 2002 – A one man show

No one cast me in plays. So I said F.U and decided to do my own SOLO play. Quasar selected my play for thespo, Vivek Madan helped me correct my speech, Shiv taught me physical acting, Dolly Aunty and Jiten Merchant gave me an award for Best Actor!

Year 2003 – Trying luck in Mumbai

Alyque Padamsee, a man whose biography I had read and had wished to meet him once, 3 months after making that wish, I got to collaborate with him in writing a play, working with him hearing to his bizarre life experiences made me learn so much about life.

Year 2004 – Start a Theatre company!

I have never waited for an opportunity, I will try once, and if it is not given to me, then I create my own. Thanks to Kishore, Preetam, Shilpa, Tara, Munish, Abhishek, Akul Balagi and many more for supporting me in making ACTor Company Theatre.

Year 2005 –Bangalore Broadway

As a passionate actor with a theatre company, my dream was to perform everyday. But it was not heard of inBangalore. I told my friend that lets make a play which will run 3 shows a day for an entire week. People laughed, but we did manage to do SLEUTH. We put a big set and had 15 shows in 6 days! I needed LOTS of TOYS as a part of the set design and I didn’t have the budgets to buy those, one week before the show Landmark comes in and gives us toys from their store – for FREE! I also needed a lot of furniture, Nisha, the owner of Essentially Metal not only gave us the furniture from her store, but she custom made some of them to suit the play – All this for FREE! Till date I have no idea how that happened. Other than that, there were a dozen of people who worked for this play. Thanks to all the crew members who blindly believed in me when I had proposed the idea.

Year 2006 – Mumbai chapter 2

I again ended up in Mumbai to try my luck. I have to thank Ashit Modi for giving me a job or rather a salary every month for not doing anything. Thanks to those salaries, it gave me food and the time to watch movies sitting at home, and this is how I learnt about film making.

Year 2007 – The Villan in Me

I was so frustrated wit my career about nothing BIG happening. When I got to know that Suri was auditioning for his film Inthi Ninna Preethiya, I went there and threw around a lot of attitude. I had decided that I was going to quit everything after that audition. But Suri took me in the movie. I became Vaasane Babu!

Year 2008 – The strange tall Big Man

I happened to meet Yogaraj Bhat by chance. I didn’t know anything about him, I was waiting for Suri in the office but instead Yogaraj drops in. We started chatting, its been 5 years and it hasn’t stopped!

Since 2008, many people have come in and offered their support in small and big ways. I hope they all had something to take back from me as well. And now in the year 2012, I have these strangers from all corners of the world becoming my new friends who don’t mind spending some money but want to support me in my madness J

To all those who thought Project Lucia was wrong, that it won’t work, or didn’t want it to work, thank you for showing the concern but remember that any change or any new attempt requires a little bit of madness. I have tried it all my life, and it has worked. Yes, there are troubles but isn’t it fun to solve those.

My favorite quote until I finish Lucia – Pain is temporary, Film is for ever!