Ganesh: Hit or flop, I should not fail as an actor
The Golden Star, who has completed 14 years of his journey as a hero, says the lockdown is helping him reassess himself as an actor
“Time flies,” says Ganesh when asked about completing 14 years in the film industry. “I realised it only when my fans updated me. I spoke to director Yogaraj Bhat, who more or less started his directorial journey around the same time as me, and he said, 'I thought we we've been here for 200 years, but it’s been just 14 years,'” chuckles the actor, mentioning that it is actually 20 years since he began his career in television as an actor and show host, before moving on to cinema. “It is 14 years only in my journey as a hero.”
While utilising this lockdown period to spend time with his family and doing his bit of social service, Ganesh is also reassessing himself as an actor by watching his own films. “I have been watching my old films on television. This is helping me analyse the characters and subjects I have played, as I feel I could’ve done certain roles better. The latest film I watched of mine was Pataki and I felt that I should do a cop role again,” he says, adding that he has never had so much time to spare.
“Even before becoming an actor, during my college years, I never sat in one place. After completing my classes, I would either be at rehearsals or coaching centres. I did part-time jobs as well. I remember doing brand survey jobs, for which we were paid by the hour. I did all this for my pocket money and to watch movies. Sitting idle has been never been a habit. After I started my career, this is the first time, I have been this free. It’s been almost 65 days,” says Ganesh, who had completed a schedule for director Suni’s Sakath and was supposed to resume shooting in March when the lockdown was announced.
Ganesh, who shot to fame as a host of the talk show Comedy Time, says it gave him a big boost. His stint in cinema started with a villain’s role in Tapori. He later played supporting roles, until he got the break to play the lead in Chellata in 2006.
The actor, who is best known for Mungaru Male, says it was a golden period for him when he managed to give a series of hits. “Hit or flop is part of one’s career. But one should not fail as an actor. If you do, it is the end of your career. There have been films which were experiments and would not have connected with the audiences. However, as an actor, I would have enjoyed the role. I have enjoyed the hits best and was glad to see my director and producers happy. But at the same time, whenever I had super hits, I felt fear within,” he says.
The actor says before Mungaru Male, he didn’t have a clear idea about films getting the ‘super hit’ tag. “I immersed myself in dialogue delivery and acting, and never tried to learn the business aspect of cinema. So I didn’t have that fear. Once Mungaru Male was a hit, I thought it will be the same with every film of mine. However, only when I faced my first failure, which I think might have been my 11th or 12th film, did I get to know the difference between a super hit, an average and a flop film,” recalls Ganesh, adding, “Whether you give a series of hits or not, at the end of the day, as an actor, you have to take a fresh call with every project.”
The actor, who has also tried his hand at direction, production, and singing, has three interesting projects lined up — Sakath, Gaalipata 2 and Trible Riding.
The actor is spending his lockdown time with family and video chatting with friends. “Enjoy every moment of life. Laugh out loud, be kind to others. At the end of the day, nothing else matters. Money and status don’t hold value here, humanity does. Quarantine period has taught each of us a lot of lessons,” he says.
The Golden Star
About the 'Golden Star' tag, Ganesh says, “It was at a time when Mungaru Male and Hudugata were declared as massive hits, and Chelluvina Chittara was doing well. I was written about a lot and people felt that everything I touched was turning to gold. I remember the lines that read, ‘Golden time for Sandalwood’, and I was given the ‘Golden Star’ tag, which holds a special place in my heart.”