Set to make his debut in Kabir Sadanand’s youth-centric action-comedy film Fugly, Olympic boxer Vijender Singh talks about his career choices, why boxing is still important to him and what he plans to do next.
Tell us about your role in Fugly. Is it similar to your real-life profession? How did you cope?
In Fugly, I portray a college graduate from Delhi and my character, Gaurav Singh Ahlawat, belongs to a political family. Ahlawat and his group of friends are living in their own dreamscape, but things start changing for the worse after one particular incident and because of a cop, who is played by Jimmy Shergill.
The role doesn’t essay my real-life profession. I am not playing a boxer, though in some scenes, I am seen boxing. Since it is a Delhi-based character, I could easily relate to the role. “Fugly” means a fight against “ugly”, and I share that philosophy. Kabir Sadanand, the director, helped me a lot. He made me really comfortable on the sets since he has been a sportsperson himself. The other crew members would go by car and we would ride our bikes together to Leh. I have faced the camera before, a moving camera is a different thing.
How did you get the role?
Once, Akshay (Kumar) and I were having a mock sparring session in Chandigarh at a public event, where he jokingly promised that since I made him box, he would make me act. So I auditioned for the role and bagged the project. Once my character was decided, the other actors — Mohit Marwah, Kiara Advani, Arif Lamba — were selected. We spent a week to 10 days hanging out with each other and getting to know each other better. Now we are good friends.
There were rumours that you were offered a film opposite Govinda’s daughter Narmada. What made you accept Fugly?
I received many movie offers ever since I won bronze at the Beijing Olympics, but I was holding back for a good script. This film had a good banner and it was a good role.
Who doesn’t want to be associated with the glamour industry and enjoy all the attention? I would love to get into films, modelling, singing or anything else that comes my way. I don’t want to refuse anyone or anything.
So are movies your new calling?
Not at all. I don’t want to leave boxing. I did not attend the last training camp because I was busy with police training since I am still a DSP with the Haryana Police. But I decided to keep my police training on hold and focus on my boxing this time. My boxing training camp started from April 15 at Netaji Subhash National Institute of Sports, Patiala. Therem I will train for the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in July and Asian Games continued…