Riteish Deshmukh can easily adjust to his surroundings and to people around him. The 36 year actor is chilled out and patient like his father. He is a practising architect who wants to do many things in life, including making a museum for films. He will soon make his debut as a Marathi actor and recently he has won a National award for his Marathi film Yellow. Ahead is Riteish’s upcoming comedy Humshakals, he talks to Bombay Times about his entry into films.
How did you come into films?
Latur is my birthplace , where my father was a local politician and lived there till the age of five, we moved to Mumbai when my father became a minister. I changed two schools in Mumbai , before I was moved with my older brother to a hostel in Panchgani, as my father was not a minister and, thus, we did not have a house in Mumbai. In 1986, we came back to Mumbai as my father again became a minister and our formal education started. I went to Kamla Raheja School of Architecture after finishing school and completed my architecture degree. My father’s friend Subhash Ghai was building Whistling Woods at that time. I was going to New York to work for a year, Subhashji was going to shoot Yaadein in London and invited me on his set to see the shoot on my way to New York. ‘Wow, I will get to see Hrithik Roshan, I said. I went on the set and spent a few days there and then moved to New York. There was my architecture friend who was assisting Subhashji visited New York when I was there. As I was looking some creative courses there he suggested to do theatre workshops, as that would help me understand people better. I used to watch five films a day, do my homework on movies and sometimes even watch the same movie 10 times. I was a big fan of Shah Rukh Khan and have grown up on Hindi films. I had never thought of becoming an actor, but through the DOP of Yaadein who had seen me in London asked my director friend if I was interested in acting. After a year-and-a-half, I got my first film Tujhe Meri Kasam, made by Ramoji Rao, as he was also the DOP on that film. I had to go to my father who was the Chief Minister of Maharashtra by this time and take his permission. Contrary to what I thought he said, ‘Go, do it’. It took me 10 days to sum up the courage to ask him. And I became an actor.