Shahid Kapoor found playing a drug addict a major challenge in Udta Punjab. The actor who is a teetotaller in real life said that it was difficult to put on the garb of an ‘always high on drugs’ rapper.
Speaking to IndianExpress.com, Shahid said, “It was very difficult. The most challenging part was to play a cocaine addict. I have never ever had even alcohol. Most people have tried something or the other in their lives. I have never tried anything. It was scary to play a character who is always high when you don’t even know what it is like to be high. So it was not a normal challenge as an actor but a challenge as a person play this role.”
To prepare for his role, the actor saw various documentaries apart from spending time with director Abhishek Chaubey trying to grasp the finer nuances of the role. “There were a lot of documentaries that I watched. I also to spoke to Abhishek at length to get into the physical nature of the character. Also, Tommy Singh is not just an addict, he is a huge star. He is a musician. He is this ghabru guy. There are many layers to it and him being an addict is just one aspect of it.”
Surprisingly, Shahid was not aware of Punjab’s drug menace until Udta Punjab happened. “I didn’t even know about it. When Abhishek narrated the story to me, I was like really!”
The actor also refuted talks about the film portraying Punjab in bad light. “Because the film’s title is Udta Punjab, we are looking at it in a slightly limited manner. In Haider, Kashmir was the backdrop. Similarly, here Punjab is the backdrop. But is this problem limited to a place? No, it is not. This problem is not just about one place. It is about an entire generation today who has easy access and high exposure to drugs at an early age and it is actually considered cool to do drugs. This issue is for our generation and generations to come. So we shouldn’t try and limit it to one place. Of course, we will have to base a film in one particular place but the issue is much larger. And the issue is relevant. Otherwise we would make a Punjabi film on it. Udta Punjab is a film that everybody should think about.”
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