Home » Bollywood News » Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub on working with 'star' SRK in Raees, All Is Well, and much more

Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub on working with 'star' SRK in Raees, All Is Well, and much more

Vineeta Kumar | Updated on: 13 February 2017, 3:46 IST

How many actors in Bollywood are known for 'acting' and not because of their big surnames, stardom and controversies? Take a moment. Chances are you can count them on your fingers.

Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub Khan, who is known for his performances in films like Tanu Weds Manu, Raanjhanaa, Dolly Ki Doli, No One Killed Jessica and Mere Brother Ki Dulhan amongst others is one such 'actor.'

A villain in filmmaker Umesh Shukla's next All Is Well, Khan gets candid with Catch about various things. He talks about how Bollywood is not what it appears to be, his chemistry with Abhishek Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan starrer Raees and much more. Check this out:

All Is Well - please talk about your character in the film.

It is not a negative character. However, it appears so. My character in the film is someone who wants to control everything and dominate others.

What made you accept the film?

There is nothing very prominent as such. But for the director, Umesh Shukla. He offered me something experimental. It is a form of acting that I haven't delivered on screen. The character in the film is not witty, not completely hilarious. It is an area that I haven't explored on screen.

So, you are fond of books. What kind of books do you like? Has reading influenced your personality or your characters in films?

I like world culture, philosophy. I have been an acting teacher. I won't be able to tell you exactly what books have influenced me to portray roles on screen. But, while I was doing Ranjahana and Tanu Weds Manu, I found out that I could transcribe my readings of a few books where the backdrop of the story was local, quite similar to the set-up of both these films. (Raanjhana was set in Banaras and Tanu Weds Manu in Kanpur).

Kangana Ranaut with Mohamed Zeeshan Ayyub in Tanu WEds Manu Returns_File photo

Tanu Weds Manu Returns movie still

Is there something you have observed about Bollywood that can justify the saying that "showbiz is not what it appears." Any bitter incident?

It is not. Because it is like doing any other job. If you are new, you are working, trying your best, hurdles will come and you start learning to deal with them. That's how you struggle and grow. But, if I were to tell you an incident, there is one.

I will not take name but there was a very famous director. He and I were having a discussion over my character in one of my films. He wanted it to be in a comic way and I wanted it to reflect a sort of seriousness. And while we both were discussing, he said that don't take your character so seriously. It is not that important.

So, at times in the industry, it happens that you are promised something initially and what comes out is completely different.

Please talk about your chemistry with all other stars of All Is Well. Abhishek, Asin, Supriya ji...

It was all fun. Abhishek was like an elder brother. He used to tell me that do your bit this way and taking care of me in every other form. Supriya ji is already known to me. She is a very good friend of my mother and Chintu ji too is very supportive. He is always motivating you and making you feel interested in your job.

Is there any specific kind of character you are waiting for?

No. Because I feel an actor's job is to just act. If I were to decide that I want to play something like this, I will play it in a pre-planned way. There will not be any art to it then.

Dhanush with Mohamed Zeeshan Ayyub in Raanjhanaa_File photo

Raanjhanaa movie still

You were once asked about taking up a lead role in a film and here's what you said:

"My schooling in life has never been around dance and song; and if someone makes me do that, it will be very tough for me."

What is your definition of a Bollywood actor? Is it nothing more than just singing and dancing in a film?

I gave this statement in a different context. However, I will clarify that there is no definition of a Bollywood actor. But, yes, an actor is someone who can emote his character in a best way.

So then, who is a Bollywood actor and a Bollywood star? How would you differentiate between the two?

Yes, there is a difference. Of course, an actor is a great performer but when you say star, it is more about the stardom. One may be a good actor but not a star like one of my friends who was with me in NSD (National School of Drama) and he was more-than-a-brilliant actor. But he never chose films and remained happy with theatres. He is not a star.

But, here we have stars like Shah Rukh Khan, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Irrfan bhai (Irrfan Khan) who are great actors and are stars too. People don't use word 'star' when they talk about Shah Rukh Khan, his name is enough. People are also talking about how brilliant Salman Khan has worked in Bajrangi Bhaijaan. They are big stars but great actors too.

<a href=Sonam Kapoor with Mohamed Zeeshan Ayyub in Dolly Ki Doli_Twitter">

Photo: Twitter/@sonamkapoor

10. People do not know much about your character in Raees. Please tell us.

I am not in a position to talk much about the film. But, I am playing someone who is with Shah Rukh sir and my character is very important in the film.

Can you share any memorable incident while you were shooting for the film (Raees)?

Everything about the film is memorable. And as I said I can't talk about the film. But, it was wonderful working with Shah Rukh Khan. I was up the whole night when I saw that he has praised my work in the film on Twitter. I kept on staring at my Twitter wall for most part of the night.

Apart from the fact that Shah Rukh Khan is in Raees, what is it in the film that would intrigue a viewer to go and watch the film?

It is a different film. It is Raees and not Happy New Year. It has got a dark side to it and a mysterious aspect.

One reason why your fans should watch All is Well?

Even though I don't think that I have a fan-following, I would say that the film portrays emotion that has never been explored really in Indian cinema - a father-son relationship.

Can you quickly point out three things that you have learned from Shah Rukh Khan while working with him in Raees.

1. Hard work

2. Honesty

3. How to keep your co-actors in comfort

First published: 19 August 2015, 4:18 IST
Vineeta Kumar @VineetaKumar_09

Vineeta brings Bollywood fun and intricate showbiz details to Catch/Speed News. She has worked with IndiaTV, Zee News, and is here to provide Catch readers with the best of 'quality entertainment'. A Delhi girl, Vineeta pursued BMMMC from I P College for Women, Delhi University, and craves to know more all the time. When she is not indulging in a serious cinematic discussion over a film she just watched, Vineeta is either reading a fantasy book or polishing her artistic skills.