posted on : 30 Jul 2013
Roughly three years ago, a Sindhi boy, Ranveer Singh Bhavnani, rocked Bollywood with his debut in Band Baaja Baaraat. And now, another Sindhi, Girish Taurani, the son of a music and film production company’s head honcho, forays into Bollywood with Ramaiya Vastavaiya, directed by hit-machine Prabhudeva. Some have tagged him as the younger version of Saif Ali Khan, thanks to his looks. But the 20-something lad shrugs it off and admits that he’s heavily inspired by Salman Khan. That’s perhaps the reason he has stripped off his shirt for his launch vehicle. Acting, he insists, runs in his blood. He doesn’t even hesitate to pick up Ranbir Kapoor’s lines, “If I was not an actor, I would have been a bad actor.” Here’s an excerpt of other things he had to say at the cusp of stardom…
Tips head honcho Kumar Taurani’s son may not be the quintessential hero, but he’s good looking, fair skinned and is blessed with a decent physique. His looks are unconventional. His father and uncle Ramesh are seasoned gamers in showbiz and it’s not surprising then, that Girish is ready to make his entry in Bollywood under the able guidance of the superhit director-actor Prabhudeva.
“I Believe Prabhudeva Wouldn’t Have Invested His Time Directing Me If He Felt I Wasn’t Worth It.”
After exchanging pleasantries at the Tips office, we decided to settle for coffee before we got down to business. The 20-something boy studied in the United Kingdom. As a child, he was fond of watching films and the ones which inspired him were Salman Khan’s movies. An ardent fan of the box office’s King Midas, he decided to follow into his footsteps and become an actor himself. It was Pyaar Kiya Toh Darna Kya that helped Girish muster the courage to chase his dreams and approach his father for help.
“I was merely 15 when I watched Pyaar Kiya Toh Darna Kya. I loved it so much that I told my father that I wanted to act. I was too young obviously to be taken seriously. I was packed off to a boarding school in the UK, but I didn’t lose focus. When I came back, I confided in my father about my aspirations. This time, he knew I was serious and couldn’t be brushed aside. He was impressed that it wasn’t a mere kiddie ambition. He decided to give me my big break,” recalls Girish, adding that at 23, there are few and far between that land a chance like that. His father cast him in Ramaiya Vastavaiya opposite Shruti Haasan, and handed over the controls to Prabhudeva who has a 100 per cent track record at the box office so far.
Naturally, the newcomer feels lucky he didn’t have to struggle, but maintains that it wasn’t a walk in the park either. “I didn’t go for auditions because my father didn’t want me to. But I had to undergo a look test for Ramaiya Vastavaiya. I made the most of it. Filmmaking is business. And I believe Prabhudeva wouldn’t have invested his time directing me if he felt I wasn’t worth it. He showed a lot of confidence in me. He was supportive and forthcoming,” feels Girish.
Prabhudeva came aboard the project three years ago to groom the newbie. The film only went on floors last year. In the interim, Girish trained in acting and dance with his director who even appointed a few choreographers to specifically work on honing his dancing skills. “Before we started shooting, I shot a few scenes and a dance number with Prabhudeva. He wasn’t happy, he felt that I’m not mentally relaxed. I trained under a few other choreographers then. I even took acting lessons from an institute in Mumbai. I recorded my work and sent it to Prabhudeva on a CD on weekly basis for feedback,” elaborates Girish, who wasn’t in great shape, pun intended, at that time. He was overweight and needed to kick a few kilos off his body instantly to become an actor. Daddy Taurani promptly hired a South African trainer who turned his body around. The actor lets in, “I was never in shape, so I had to train more than others. I couldn’t ditch my diet plan even for an hour. My workout regime was strict and restrained me from a lot of things. And then, I started looking the way I do.”
Last year, after all the rigmarole, Ramaiya Vastavaiya went on floors with some seasoned names like Vinod Khanna, Randhir Kapoor and
Satish Shah on board. Ecstatically, he says “I grew up watching Vinod Khanna and Randhir Kapoor’s films. I enjoyed working with them. They knew I am a newbie and I would need time to get the hang of things. We gelled beautifully.”
Ramaiya Vastavaiya revolves around Ram who falls in love and follows the girl to her farm, where her elder brother (Sonu Sood) challenges his feelings for his sister. He takes on the challenge like a man. Like his character in the film, does he also believe in true love? Girish says, “I do. It’s a lovely feeling to be loved by someone. It is blissful, but I would not like to comment on whether I have someone in my life already or not.”
It’s believed that Prabhudeva chose Shruti Haasan over Katrina Kaif, Genelia D’Souza and Parineeti Chopra for the film. It’s said that Girish’s chocolate boy looks restricted his choice to Shruti Hassan who was seemed perfect as his on-screen ladylove. Does he feel pinched on missing out on a chance to romance a seasoned heroine in his debut film? Girish says, “My father didn’t want me to get involved with the intricacies. He told me to concentrate on acting. Casting Shruti was a joint call between my father and Prabhudeva. And I feel Shruti has proved them right!”