Nobody can be a superhero, if super villain is not in the picture. For a impeccable superhero, you need a menacing villain. For Baji, first Marathi superhero, Martand is such super villain. Jitendra Joshi who has earlier done a negative character in college drama Duniyadari, Baji was a different game altogether. He has done everything for this role, from working out a fabulous bod to shaving his head. His sweet and poetic looks are gone and scary wicked smile is gripping Marathi audience. In this interview with us, Jitu spoke about his experience for working this super film.
How was your experience of working in this big budget movie?
I consider this as my luck to be able to work in this film. Most of the time especially in Marathi films there are many big budget films where budget can be seen only on paper. While watching that movie on screen does not present any budget at all. That is not the case with Baji. In Baji you can see where the money has been spent. For example, Shreyas has been cast as lead role. Shreyas will not do any low budget film. He is a big star! Jokes apart, the film is big budget because the story and its presentation requires all such elements. Producers have not spent money on frivolous things, but they have made sure that production values are up to the mark. When you see the film, you will understand why this film needed more budget.
How was your experience working in a negative character?
Earlier, I did a negative character in Duniyadari. That was a smashing hit, but I enjoyed working. Sometimes you do a film for money sometimes you do a film because you enjoy that type of working. Baji had given me both these satisfaction. Professionally, it is a very good opportunity and at the same time, as an artiste it has fulfilled me internally. This is taking me one step ahead in my career. Martand could have been portrayed in many ways. But Nikhil knew how he would like this character on screen, I liked his vision. When you trust your director, your job becomes very easy. The character of Martand is completely different in first half and second half. Also, working with Shreyas was a bonus. I hope this will give me more recognition.
Tell us about Nikhil Mahajan and his working style.
Some directors are good in improvisation, some are good in story-telling, and some can do amazing shot division. Nikhil is master in all these things. He knows what will be clicked at the box office. Look at the music of this film. The music director is not Marathi, yet Nikhil has done an astonishing job of getting perfect music from him. When I heard two songs of this film, I immediately disliked them. However, when you see these songs in the film I understood why these songs are in such way. When they came with visuals came that total impact was different. It just fits beautifully in the picture. Nikhil knows the pulse of audience. Baji songs are already chartbusters. Nikhil knew what he wanted and how he wanted.
Tell us something more about your co-stars.
Shreyas is such a down to earth person. Even after being so successful in Bollywood and Marathi, he is still that simple and sweet guy. He has never allowed his fame to get in his head. His hard work dedication and simplicity are things I would like to imbibe in me. Working with Amruta was a different experience. Amruta is a successful actress, but this film has given her a chance to showcase her talent. We will see her in a never seen avatar for this film. She has been known for her glamorous roles. In this film she has faced without any makeup. That was actually relieving for us, as we did not have to wait even for once “Madam ka touch up karana hai” She was always ready on the sets. That was really delightful experience. The action sequences of this film are highlight. We had Stunt Silva, a famous action director from South for this film. I can vouch that Marathi films never had such action scenes till date. Shreyas had many injuries while shooting for this film.
How different is Jitendra Joshi in real life from Martand?
I don’t think I can relate to Martand in any way. Any actor comes into this profession because he wants to be somebody else. Living another person’s life is every actor’s dream. No actor would like to live like his characters. Shreyas can not ride one horse everyday, that’s why he does Baji. This villain Martand is such a violent person, I cannot tolerate this much violence. But still if you look everywhere violence is present. As an actor I can reflect such violence through my acting. If I Had to do roles just like myself wouldn’t that be very boring?
Interview By Pradnya Mandhare.