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Pawan Kumar: I can’t say no to Yogaraj Bhat- Cinema express

Pawan Kumar: I can’t say no to Yogaraj Bhat

The actor talks about his experience working as an actor in Yogaraj Bhat’s Gaalipata 2


Published: 01st August 2022

Pawan Kumar is the new romantic hero in town, especially after the launch of the song, Neenu Bagehariyada, from Yogaraj Bhat’s Gaalipata 2. The fascinating love track, featuring himself and Sharmiela Mandre, has music by Arjun Janya and lyrics by Jayanth Kaikini. However, Pawan Kumar, tongue-in-cheek remarks that the timing of the song is simply wrong, and says, “My daughter just asked me, ‘Why are there so many women in your life’, and I didn’t know where to begin.”

The romantic drama starring Pawan Kumar as Master Bhushan, has him sharing screen space with Ganesh, Diganth Manchale, Anant Nag, Vaibhavi Shandilya, Samyuktha Menon, and Nishvika Naidu.  “Everybody who knows me well have been saying that finally, I am getting to play myself on screen,” says Pawan when asked about Gaalipata 2 tapping into his romantic side. “Shooting for the song was an experience in itself because it was something I have never done in front of so many people. Sharmiela became a good friend, and our on-screen chemistry worked well. It was a very known set and it was easy to do, and overall, the song has come out better than we expected,” he says.

Pawan says that as a director, he was dealing with a lot of other things, and it ensured people didn’t really know this side of him. “As an actor, I believe that we should do something completely different than what people regularly think. That’s where the whole fun lies,” he adds.

Is director Pawan trying to establish his acting chops in front of the camera now? “Yogaraj Bhat and I have worked together before, and I can’t really say ‘No’ to him. I also knew that his films will be fun to do. So I didn’t think too much. I was in a place where I could give time to this project. So when Yogaraj Bhat called and discussed the role, I went ahead. Luckily I’m not in the lead actor zone, and there was no pressure of being in and acting in a certain way. All that I had to make sure of was to keep up with the scene and entertain.”

Pawan chose Gaalipata 2 in 2018, way before the pandemic. “The title, which got confirmed after I entered the sets, created pressure because it was a big franchise. Gaalipata 2 had the big pillars coming together, and I was an addition. The film has taken its own time but in a good way,” says Pawan.

Even though Pawan has replaced Rajesh Krishnan from the original, the latter still has a strong connection with the audience. “Gaalipata is a benchmark film, and people will definitely start comparing. There is no connection between the first and second parts of Gaalipata, other than the theme. Otherwise, it is completely a new story, with a different characterisation. So the audience should look at it as an individual film.”

Did Pawan Kumar limit himself to be just an actor, or did the director in him come out at times? “Yogaraj Bhat chose me because the character demanded a person like me. He knew I would come with no inhibitions, and I could play the role with ease. Coming from Bhatru, I could educate myself on newer things. There were times when I was negative about shooting during the pandemic, but his planning became learning to me,” he says, adding, “I think very differently, and this is a typical Yogaraj film. As a director, there are some things I could not connect with, but as an actor, I could. I try to look at it as a completely new experience. I was happy to shut my director’s self off on the sets of this film. I was very happy to just perform to the director’s vision, and let it go.”

Is Pawan Kumar shifting focus from direction? “No. Acting is something I will take up only if I enjoy the role. If I have to take my skills forward, there should be some meaning. I want to be part of some good roles, and also play cameos when they come up,” he signs off.

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