Based on true events about independent India winning its first Olympic gold medal in hockey, Gold stars Akshay Kumar, Vineet Kumar Singh, Kunal Kapoor, Amit Sadh, Sunny Kaushal and Mouni Roy. Vineet recently sat down for an exclusive chat with indianexpress.com. The actor, who hails from Varanasi, opened up about his role in Gold, his struggles and how sports changed his life.
Calling his journey no less than a steep mountain climb, Vineet shared, “I have always wanted to be an actor. My younger siblings knew about it but I never had the support of my parents. When I told my father, I wanted to move to Mumbai, he showed me the door. He said I have five kids, and if one leaves, it wouldn’t make a difference. That’s when I decided I needed to first stand on my own feet before I could take any major decisions in my life.”
Not many would know that the actor was an Ayurvedic doctor before he entered Bollywood. “My father is a mathematician. Most of my uncles were also in the same subjects. Even during the holidays, they would make me study maths. I wanted to first get rid of them, so I took up biology. And being from a family that gave value to academics, I had to study further. I also thought that being a doctor would help me fulfill my dreams of becoming an actor. I had heard and read about the struggles of outsiders in Bollywood. So, I hatched a plan that I could practice during the day, and struggle at night. Also, I could even earn money to survive in Mumbai,” shared the actor with a smile.
Sharing more about his struggle, Vineet said, “I came to Mumbai in December 1999. And every day I would wake up with the hope that I will soon find work. I would make a list of filmmakers and casting directors and reach out to them consistently. It has been a roller-coaster ride but thankfully I finally managed to become an actor. It came a bit late but I am happy that finally my efforts and perseverance has paid off.”
Before Gold, the actor played a boxer in Mukkabaaz, which released earlier this year. Sharing how sports changed his life, Vineet said, “As a child, I used to play hockey and then got involved in basketball. I was not a very good player and I would really work hard to be in the top 5. The never-give-up attitude definitely came from my association with sports from a young age. It really helped me survive and keep patience during my tough days. Sports also helps you become adaptable, a team player and of course strong and competitive.”
Talking about Gold and his role, the 35-year-old shared, “I play Imtiaz Shah, who has a very distinctive personality in the film. To be honest, the script is the real hero of Gold. It is such a strong and well-researched story. I would have happily let go off five projects for this. The film depicts the journey of Imtiaz and the team from 1936 to 1948. In the 12 years, a lot had changed – from the World War to India getting independent. These incidents become a strong reason behind each character’s personality. And it would be really interesting for the audience to experience it. Also, I have always wanted to work with Reema Kagti. So, it was an added bonus.”
Vineet has films like Gangs of Wasseypur, Ugly, Isaaq, Bombay Talkies and Daas Dev among more to his credit. When asked what makes him choose such unconventional projects, he laughed to share, “Sirf aise hi roles offer hote hai (I only get offered such roles). Thankfully, after Mukkabaaz, I am being offered different roles. But to be honest, as an actor I enjoy such strong roles that people remember for years. It’s a great thing for any performer. Coming from a small town, I have grown up watching all kinds of films. And so, I really want to try every genre, be it romance, comedy and even sing and dance (laughs).”
Lastly, when we asked him one life lesson that Bollywood has given him, Vineet said, “Just one? It has given me a complete lesson book. Being an actor is all about experiences and meeting new people. The world is a market for us and we keep buying moments whenever we can.”
Produced by Farhan Akhtar and Ritesh Sidhwani, Gold will release on August 15.