Actor Anjum Sharma made a place for himself in the film industry with roles in Slumdog Millionaire, David and the recent Wazir, also played the iconic role of Sher Khan in a play based on the popular adventure film, The Jungle Book. A Journalist Reveals caught up with Anjum to find out about more of his current projects and other things close to his heart.
Tell us something about your childhood?
I was born in New Delhi. I studied there till class 7th and then shifted to Bombay. I was the only child, so had a protective childhood with equal amount of strictness and pampering from my parents and close relatives. I don’t even remember exactly when I got fascinated by the world of films. I remember singing and dancing on songs from Ram Lakhan – Ae ji o ji… and hugely fascinated and mesmerized then until now, by highly intense performance by Mr. Bachchan in Hum.
Being the youngest among my cousins I was loved by all and treated with utmost love and care.
Full educational qualifications.
I am a graduate and after acquiring a degree I was very happy that then my academic studies would end. But I also did one year course in film making and film appreciation.
Though, I gradually developed a significant habit of reading, exploring and studying about things related to my profession and other interests which I am generally curious to know.
What did your parents say when you informed them that you were taking up acting as a career, given that the field is to unreliable and unpredictable?
They were definitely concerned and worried. I started doing a job in the post production department, which was followed by my trying my hand on being an assistant director. After that I told them that I was interested in acting. And from that day, a year and a half, it was tough for me to convince them that I could be decent in the work which I would like to do. When they saw me working after few years and my interest in my work, they were convinced.
Which was your first movie and how did you get it?
My first movie was Slumdog Millionaire. I was told by some one that at some random address auditions were happening for a small budget English film. I went and auditioned for the main part. Later the age of that character was reduced and I didn’t fit the character. It was only possible after 2-3 months when I received a call from Loveleen Tandon, one morning that there was one scene in the film, which would suit me and would I like to do it. She told me to do it just as an experience. There was nothing much in the role. I did it for an experience and wanted to buy a camera from the money I was getting paid. After exactly one year I realized that first time I faced the camera in a film, was an Oscar winning film.
Which was your first shot? Were you nervous?
First shot was in Slumdog Millionaire. “I never get it”, was my first line. Ironically, but I got it later. I’m happy that in my acting career my first film would always be an Oscar winning film
Tell us about all the movies you have done till now.
Slumdog Millionaire, David, Wazir are the films which I have done. Working for each film was an amazing experience.
Tell us about all the plays you have done till now.
Talking about my plays, till present I have acted in almost 10-12 plays, named Maa in Transit, which was with Makrand Despande, whom I consider as my guru, philosopher and guide. In recent time I was part of a play called Jungle book 2, an extension of the original story – a sequel, where I played character of Sher Khan.
Tell us about your current projects.
For now I have just finished a web series. I’m also doing a classic play by Badal Sircar. Along with this I will start a new project by July.
What do you see 10 years hence?
In 10 -15 years I would be acting definitely, also producing creative content. Even when I work as an actor, I give tremendous importance to the content and make sure how it can reach its optimum level.
What do you do when not acting?
When I am not acting, I am discussing ideas, reading poetry, learning different things related to performing arts, scripts, plays, movies, performances and other interesting things. These days I am indulging a lot in theories related to space time, quantum physics, gravity and other related subjects as I find them highly fascinating.