The commercial viability of an actor is not a measurement of his or her talent, and the result of this disparity is the difference between an actor and a star. But Raj Kummar Rao, a solid performer who is yet to get the stamp of a commercial actor, says stardom happens accidentally and it is more important to hone one’s skills than chase it.
Having starred in films like Shahid, Kai Po Che and Aligarh, Raj Kummar has attained a certain credibility as an actor, but the commerce of cinema hasn’t backed him much.
When asked if his saleability at the box office matters to him, the actor said, “That (box office) is something, which is not under my control, I can’t help it. So, there is no point thinking about it and feeling sad or happy. My only job is to act and play the character truthfully and honestly.”
He added, “Being a star is accidental. You can be a star with one film but what about your next ten films? So, my job is just to be constant and be honest towards my craft, which I try.”
Interacting with the media during the trailer launch or his upcoming film Trapped, Raj Kummar said that he hopes that with time the amalgamation of stardom and talent becomes common. “Being a star is the byproduct of your work. I hope we have a ‘star actor’ since you’re saying there are ‘stars’ and ‘actors’,” he said.
With Trapped, Raj Kummar is yet again in a zone familiar to him – a film resting on the shoulders of a unique storyline and performance. For such film choices, he is often called the poster-boy of independent cinema. But the actor feels that today commercial and independent cinema often overlap.
“I think that line between indie cinema and commercial is thinning. There isn’t not much a difference between them. If you put four songs and one item number, it will become a commercial film. I really don’t differentiate between a commercial or an indie film. For me it’s the story which matters and the filmmakers, Raj Kummar said.
The Vikramaditya Motwane directed film is a survival-drama-thriller about a guy, played by Raj Kummar, who gets trapped in his own house at a high rise building with no escape route.
Watch | TRAPPED | Official Trailer
The actor prepared for the role by surviving on “coffee and carrots” while shooting for the movie to portray his physical transformation convincingly.
“It was physically and mentally exhausting for me to live in that space for almost 18-20 days, to eat nothing. Trust me, it’s scary to hell. If you don’t eat for two days you feel so frustrated, angry on everything. There were times when there was a blackout. I used to get up and sit quietly for a moment. But that’s the fun of being an actor. I feel very lucky to play such parts and work with such filmmakers,” Raj Kummar said.
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