Tall on talent

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 09 Feb 2016 13:22:12

Vaibbhav Tatwawdi



Aasawari Shenolikar

“It is talent alone that counts in the world of entertainment. If you are talented enough, there will be a beeline of filmmakers ready to sign you on,” says the good looking Vaibbhav Tatwawdi, who dreamt of becoming an actor when he was in his eight standard, and today, he is a name to reckon with in the Marathi film industry and is carving a niche in Bollywood.
Vaibbhav is still basking in the accolades that he received for playing Chimaji Appa in Bajirao Mastani. “That was a dream come true,” states Vaibbhav, who was in the city to promote his forthcoming film Mr. And Mrs. Sadachari with his co-star Prarthana Behere. Now that he has dabbled in both Marathi films and Hindi films, what is the difference, if any, that he perceived in the working of both the industries?
 “The difference, I think, lies in the budget. Bollywood caters to films with mega budgets. Rs 100 crore was spent in the making of Bajirao Mastani, while Prakash Jha’s next that I have starred is a small-budgeted film. Marathi films too sail in the mid/small budget category. However, in terms of creativity - it is the same in both the industries.”
Of course content-wise Marathi film industry is far richer and according to Vaibbhav this is the best phase in Marathi cinema. “Perceptions have changed, of the filmmakers as well as of the audience. Author- backed roles are being written with actors in mind. And I feel privileged that today I have roles written for me,” says the 27-year-old guy, who is pretty new to the film industry. To drive home his point as to how what goes in the making of a movie matters, Vaibbhav cites an example. “Till now filmmakers did not pay detailed attention to the action sequences in Marathi cinema. But Ashish Wagh, the director of Mr. And Mrs. Sadachari took 12 days to shoot the action sequences. Unheard of, but what a difference it has made in the film, that is basically a love story but has a lot of action sequences in it.”
This is his second film with Prarthana, Coffee Ani Barach Kahi being the first. And he is elated at being cast with her, “because we hit it off instantly during the making of Coffee Ani Barach Kahi. See, I am a very shy guy, and I was skeptical about how I’d pair with the talented and beautiful Prarthana. But our interaction dissolved my inhibitions and we developed a bond that is getting stronger with each passing day. Our working styles are similar, we are on the same level and that translates well on the screen.”
Coffee And Barach Kahi was a success, the audience related with it and it got a thumbs up from critics and masses alike. Quiz him about any pressures of crossing the bar set by his earlier venture and he says, “Just 15 minutes into the narration and I had this gut feeling that we have a winner on hand. When choosing a film, if I am confident about the director and his vision, about the team that is going to be involved in the filmmaking, I don’t have to worry about any pressures because all of us are putting in our hundred per cent. Rest is destiny. But I do believe, if we’ve worked hard, fate always smiles.”
Vaibbhav is a pure romantic at heart and feels comfortable doing romantic films. “Romance is my comfort zone, and even though Mr And Mrs. Sadachari is a romantic film, it has more to it than pure romance. I have gone out of comfort zone and I feel this is very necessary for the development of an actor.”
He also says that the time that he has spent in college as an engineering student where he was involved in theatre activities and then doing Marathi serials and now being a part of the big picture, has been a learning experience for him. “When I declared to my parents that I wanted to be an actor, they were dumbstruck. I come from a typical middle-class Maharashtrian family and my parents had chalked out only two options for me - MBBS or an Engineering degree. Arts was out of question, and being an actor - it was as if the sky had fallen. Eventually, I ended up doing engineering from CoEP. And it is here that I had my first brush with theatre and that completely changed my outlook. I saw my shortcomings and started grooming myself. And once I landed my first serial, then there has been no looking back.”
His six months stint on a dance reality show Eka Peksha Ek also helped hone his skills. “I was a very hyper kid and someone told my mother to put me in dance class to channelise my energy. She enrolled me in an academy and found that it helped. I burned the floor then, and I did well on the reality show. This helped me immensely improve my flexibility, my posture and I do believe that today an actor has to be one complete package, and I think I do fit into that category.”  But today when he looks back, he feels that he has been lucky to be in the right place at the right time with the right people who gave him the right projects.
TV, as of now, is not on his antenna. “2015 has been a good year for me and I am looking forward to 2016 as I have three films lined up for release.” Of the three, Vaibbhav is excited about Cheater directed by Ajay Phansekar, as this is a very different role. “When Phansekar approached me, he said the prerequisite of the person who will be playing the lead is that he has to be a good actor. And I zeroed in on you. Now, that was a huge compliment to me,” he grins.     
Coming to the office of The Hitavada brought back fond memories for this Nagpur lad. “I studied in Somalwar School and have been an avid reader of Twinkle Star. I was also a member of the Twinkle Club and would stand in the queue for hours during the membership drive. I was also a State-level badminton player and after winning a match would always look out for my photo in the Cityline. So The Hitavada has been kind to me and I was elated when I was told that we would be visiting the office.”
As for Mr And Mrs Sadachari that releases Feb. 19, Vaibbhav says the ‘paisa vasool’ film’s USP is a good script, good screenplay, good dialogues and ‘of course a bunch of good actors.’