Sushant Singh Rajput: I had to convince myself that I was MS Dhoni


Sushant Singh Rajput (AFP)
Sushant Singh Rajput (AFP)
The best thing about Sushant Singh Rajput is that he doesn’t think himself infallible. By his own admission, despite acting well and playing good cricket in the film ‘MS Dhoni: The Untold Story’, he is still not sure whether people would really like his acting. “Our job is to give our hundred percent to the movie and the moment it hits the bull’s eye at the box office, we feel vindicated,” says the young actor.

How difficult was it playing the role of Dhoni? According to Sushant, imitating Dhoni alone would not have sufficed so he slipped into the character more organically by convincing himself that he is Dhoni. Sushant also watched footage of about 1,000 hours featuring the cricketer on the cricket ground as well as off it. It helped that being a Dhoni fan, Sushant was quite familiar with the cricketer’s important knocks which were embellished by a full repertoire of classy shots, including the sensational helicopter shots.

Those who think that playing a successful cricketer on scene doesn’t require much physical training get it wrong. In fact, Sushant was trained by former cricketer Kiran More. Apart from him, there was a physio and an analyst. So, the whole process, according to the actor, was quite rigorous and he was put through his paces everyday. He spent four months learning the nuances of batting and wicket keeping.

Sushant has always got a kick out of playing different characters, and doing the role of a player of Dhoni’s stature, was an icing on the cake. He has also enjoyed playing the character of Ishaan in ‘Kai Po Che’ which was different from his role of Raghu in Shudh Desi Romance’. However, Sushant has always guarded against taking up projects that don’t excite him. He was quoted as saying that an actor should always be in a position to be selective about his roles.

Despite being a good student, Sushant opted for dancing and went on to join Nadira Babbar’s ‘Ekjute’ in 2005. He got a call for audition test from Balaji Telefilms after they watched one of his plays at Prithvi. He got selected and started acting in serials. His real moment of glory came when he got ‘Kai Po Che’. According to Sushant, his role in that movie made people change their perception about TV actors.