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Saturday, October 23, 2021

‘I am not a very big supporter of gym culture; never been a fan of junk food’: Siddhant Chaturvedi

"My fitness comes from my lifestyle. It's not something I'm trying to do," the actor said

Written by Shreya Agrawal | Itarsi |
October 11, 2021 12:30:24 pm
Siddhant ChaturvediSiddhant Chaturvedi shares his love for Indian street culture. (Source: Siddhant Chaturvedi/Instagram)

Siddhant Chaturvedi has made a mark for himself with his impressive performances in the web series Inside Edge, and the film Gully Boy, which made his character ‘MC Sher’ a household name. In a rather short span, he has made a place in everyone’s hearts through his performances, fitness and style.

In an exclusive conversation with indianexpress.com, Siddhant, who will soon be seen in Bunty Aur Babli 2, opened up about street culture, style, fitness, lockdown experience, hobbies and his upcoming films. Excerpts:

From digital space to the big screen, how would you sum up your journey?

It has been an overwhelming feeling to start off with Inside Edge. That’s when the OTT had really started in the country. We were the first ones to land on the moon and now you see OTT everywhere in the last two years. I’m glad because there’s just so much talent out there and they get to showcase it. These two years, it makes me really sad that I have five films in the line and theatres are shut. But, I’m also glad that you get to see so much talent from the streets on your screens. I’m fortunate to be a part of both mediums.

 

There’s a lot of buzz around your upcoming films. What do you have in store for the audience?

A lot of things, actually! I am not treading on a single line. Like an octopus, I’ve spread my legs in all genres. That’s what being an actor is all about. I didn’t want to be an actor to just be famous or to be loved. I also want to explore whatever I’ve seen on the streets in India — different characters, different stories and so much variety. Bunty Aur Babli 2 is a family entertainer. I play different characters in that. There’s also a romantic-thriller, horror-comedy, action film and a slice of life film coming after that.

How would you describe your personal style?

My style is an extension of what I am. I am simple and at the same time, I push boundaries a little bit. That little bit is the essence and goes on to define my style. For me, it’s never flashy and not trying too hard. At the same time, my style is also about not blending in and being a bit different from what you see. That’s how I am as a person as well. In films as well, I’m trying to do something different, in a progressive way.

Tell us more about your love for fitness.

I am not a fitness freak, actually. I like to jump and play around. I was trained in Taekwando. I love martial arts, gymnastics and football. So, my fitness comes from my lifestyle. It’s not something I’m trying to do. I’ve always been fit. I like to really play, that’s what it is. For me, fitness is being primal. As we grow up, we don’t play as much as we used to. I just like to play, climb walls and things like that. Anyone would find it stupid to see a grown-up man doing it but I love it, so I do it.

Diet forms an essential part of fitness. How do you maintain a healthy diet for yourself?

I’ve never been a fan of junk food anyway. I don’t believe that the street food in India is junk. I like to eat pani puri, sev puri, dosa, etc. I like Indian cuisine and what my mom cooks. I keep it basic and simple. Now I have to count my calories. But when I don’t have to, I’m just eating home-cooked food. That’s what is a healthy diet for me.

How did you maintain your health and fitness during the lockdown?

I hate the gym. I’m not a very big supporter of the gym culture. The body that you get after doing all the dumbbells and chest press, that’s not me. Unless I have to do it for a role, I try to be true to myself. Maybe, just go for a run and use the environment to my advantage. When I was at home during the lockdown, that’s what I was doing.  I used to box and kick at home. I used to stretch, do headstands in my room and dribble with football. I was trying to get skilled with what I really had, rather than doing push-ups or pull-ups. It’s more of a performance-based workout for me, which comes in naturally.

How would you sum up your lockdown experience?

It was difficult because I had films coming up. Fortunately, I was at home when it happened but I was shooting as soon as it got lifted. It’s always good to know that when this opens up, you have work. That’s very motivating as you aren’t just sitting clueless about what might happen with work when things open up. I knew I am doing a lot of work and they will come out.

I was just focusing on my skills during the lockdown — writing, watching films that I had missed and spending time with my family. For a year after Gully Boy, I was on the run. I didn’t get to spend time with my family and my brother, who is growing up right now. My brother is 17 and is into music, and I didn’t get time to be with him earlier. During the lockdown, I realised that maybe this is the last time I could spend time with them because, after this, I was going to be working day and night, fulfilling my dream. This was the time to be at home, eat food especially home-cooked food and spend time with family. I had a good time, to be honest.

What activities do you like to indulge in when you are not shooting?

When I am not shooting, I am gaming, playing Fifa with my brother, jamming with him, meeting my friends, watching films and catching up with whatever is happening in my extended family.

Social media has given a platform to the writer in you. Tell us more.

I am glad that I can express whatever I feel. I like to express my thoughts and communicate with my audience, and not just with pictures and thirst-traps. I am more than that. My ideology is what I believe in. A lot of people I know were inspired by the film Gully Boy, the character that I played and my journey. It’s good to know that it’s possible, that if you try hard and don’t give up, you are going to get there. So, I try to communicate that through my writing and express whatever I feel.

Theatres are finally opening up in most cities. Are you excited?

I am very excited about it. Bunty Aur Babli 2 will release on November 19. I’m glad that Aditya Chopra believed in the film and waited out. It’s an entertainer and exactly what you need in these times. It’s just the start, there are four more films that will come out and entertain everybody.

You are associated with Skechers’ new collection called ‘Street Ready’. What would you like to say about India’s street culture and style?

India is all about streets. Everybody is up to something on the streets, going somewhere or coming from somewhere. There’s just so much flavour and culture on the streets. I was there in Portugal for 20 days recently and I started missing India within 5-6 days. In Portugal, everybody is just chilling. But here, people are always up to something, doing or just observing something. I really love the culture on the streets because I come from the streets. I’ve been on the streets. My first film was about it. So, it’s like a personal connection for me. I’m really glad to be a part of this campaign because I had to do nothing but just be myself. This is what it is all about–being yourself. Being ‘street ready’ is basically being yourself and not trying really high to dress up. Nobody has that kind of time in India to get ready.

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