Ayushmann Khurrana debuted in Bollywood with Vicky Donor. From that film in 2012 to Yash Raj’s Dum Laga Ke Haisha (DLKH), Ayushmann has journeyed quite a distance! The 31-year-old actor spoke to Follo right after DKLH won the National Award for Best Hindi Film.
What was your first reaction to Dum Laga Ke Haisha Winning The National Award?
My first reaction was — I did not expect anything because the competition was tough with lots of good films in competition and magic happens when u do not expect anything. I am happy and I have been receiving tweets and congratulatory messages.
Whose congratulatory message did you receive first?
From my papa (father). He is very filmy and he is very happy; in fact he is the one who informed me from Chandigarh that we have won a National Award. I was surprised!
Where you shocked when you were approached for DLKH? You’d always played a ‘cool’ guy before that.
Aditya chopra did not expect that I will do this movie. He gave me the script and kaha padh lo kaisi lagi batana (said read and let me know you find it). Dum Laga Ke…was offered me soon after Vicky Donor and I was more excited about Dum Laga Ke while shooting for Bewakoofiyaan. So Aditya also started respecting me after that.
How much does winning a National Award matter to you?
I think it is credible. DLKH was not the biggest, commercially hit film. We collected some 32 crore. We have movies that earned 100 crore also! I think the content stood apart for the film. It was a contemporary movie and very progressive since both the characters were underdogs.
Does this award put a pressure on you now, in terms of your choices in films?
I don’t know. There was no plan to do an unconventional film. I think whatever connects with me I just do that. The upcoming scripts that I have chosen — Manmarzia and Meri Pyari Bindu, are very different. I am quite easy and calm as a person.
So, has this success come as a surprise to the entire Dum Laga Ke Haisha cast and makers?
Yes. But, we expected critical acclaims since it was a small film with a big heart. It was a very different film coming from Yash Raj Films, without any gloss and glamour. YRF films are known for larger than life feel with huge publicity. This was more real.
What reactions have you been getting from the film fraternity?
Everyone has been tweeting. Aaj kal msg kaun karta hai, sab tweet hi karte hain (Who messages these days? Everyone tweets!). Karaj Johar tweeted and that was really sweet of him. In fact, after watching DLKH Amitabh Bachchan had sent me a handwritten letter. People have started respecting me more after the film.
In a nutshell, your journey from being a Roadie to acting in National Award winning movies. How has it been?
Both my films — Vicky Donor and Dum Laga Ke Haisha — has won National Awards. I feel very fortunate. Roadies was quite different, not a talent show; it was more of adventurous show. It has been 11 years now. Meanwhile, I have worked as an RJ, VJ, in theatre and I am glad I started young, at 19 or 20.