Kannada industry has looked after me very well: Anant Nag
Anant Nag says that playing a Kannada professor in Gaalipata 2 was complex and challenging
One thing that has been constant in Yogaraj Bhat’s filmography is the presence of veteran actor Anant Nag. The collaboration that began in Mungaru Male continued through Gaalipata, Pancharangi, Vastu Prakara, and now, Gaalipata 2. The veteran plays a pivotal role in the film that stars Ganesh, Diganth, and Pawan Kumar in the leads. “It was a delight doing Gaalipata 2, and working with Ganesh. I’m equally happy for Ramesh Reddy, who gave his best as a producer. I kept telling him that Gaalipata 2 will be a winner for him, and I’m glad to know that it is doing well,” says Anant Nag.
The senior actor also gave us an insight into his choice of roles, which had a tectonic shift when he turned 49. “Over all these years, I have tried my hands in arts, science, and commerce, and realised that I was getting nowhere. It was God’s will that I got a chance to act in a play, and became an actor. It’s been a big journey. I’m happy and lucky to be an actor. God gave me a lot of opportunities, and the Kannada industry has looked after me very well. My stint in politics kept me away from films, and I realised how much I missed acting. It’s been a wonderful journey, which I want to enjoy to the fullest,” he says.
Anant Nag says that playing a Kannada professor in Gaalipata 2 was complex and challenging. “I had a lot of discussions with Yogaraj Bhat about the film, and ultimately he brought out the best. It was a wonderful creation by the director, and it was a pleasure to mouth those dialogues penned by him. Having studied in Kannada medium in my school days, I have a lot of admiration for the language. So this role as a Kannada professor was special to me. I was very careful, and insisted that my character should be special, and in contrast to the 3 boys and the 3 girls. He pulled it off marvelously,” he says.
Calling his experiences of working with Ganesh a delight, Anant Nag says, “Just like me, Ganesh too has a natural style of acting. Even in this film, he plays a character that is very close to mine. We have worked together in a few films, and he brings out the best in me. I hope he feels the same while working with me too,” says Anant Nag.
Gaalipata 2 is a story about friends, and the senior actor reminisces on his own friendships and his bonding with teachers. “In the first 8 years, I was educated in the Karavali area. Then I went to Bombay, where I got to make a new set of friends. After I started working in drama, I got another set of people. However, when I started my cinema career in Bengaluru, I didn’t have many friends here. The teacher or the bonding of friendship came to me with the journalists of Karnataka. They were all 15 to 20 years older than me, yet we were all like friends. They were my well-wishers, who would review my films and guide me. I lacked friends because I didn’t do my schooling here, and that void was filled by YNK, VN Subbarao, Narayan Swamy, and Seshadri among others. Unfortunately, none of them are alive today,” he says.
The legendary actor who will celebrate 50 years of his film journey in January 2023 still craves challenging roles. The actor has an interesting lineup of films up his sleeve, which includes Made in Bengaluru, Abra ka Dabra, a biopic on Vijayanand, Thimmayya and Thimmayya, and Mysore Masala, which is currently at different stages of production.