Even if I had only two or three scenes, I would like to be part of a movie like Chhapaak: Vikrant Massey

From being part of successful television shows like Balika Vadhu (2010) and Qubool Hai (2013) to commercials Bollywood movies like Dil Dhadakne Do (2015) and Half Girlfriend (2017) among others, Vikrant Massey It has come a long way. the actor , who made his Bollywood debut with Lootera (2013), has also been part of award-winning films like A death in the gunj (2017) and the controversial film, Lipstick Under My Burkha (2017). His next ... Chhapaak , directed by Meghna Gulzar - focuses on survivors of acid attacks. In a conversation with BT, before the movie is released, Vikrant talks about his co-star and co-producer Deepika Padukone and his role in the film. Excerpts ...

Chhapaak is probably the first film in Bollywood, which is based on an acid attack survivor. What were your first thoughts when you were approached for the project?

Like any other individual associated with the movie, I also wanted to be part of it immediately. When I heard the story, I was shocked. I also expected to collaborate with someone like Meghna Gulzar, regardless of the duration of my role.

I decided that even if I had only two or three scenes, I would like to be part of it, since I had read the story of Laxmi Agarwal (a survivor of an acid attack on which the film is based). As a crime, the acid attack has been ignored for a long time, although it has seen an alarming increase. It is time for us to communicate with as many people as possible and spread awareness about it. And, it could have been possible only with someone of Deepika's stature; She will help us reach a much wider audience worldwide. Movies like this should be made. Yes, at the end of it all, everyone wants to earn money. Unfortunately, today, a certain section of the industry has begun to evaluate the success and impact of a movie, based on its box office numbers. All this practice, I firmly believe, is corrupt.

When you are making a movie about a subject like acid attack, the atmosphere on the set can be intense. And, one of the biggest challenges for the team is to facilitate that ...

(Short ...) It is not a depressing story, since, ultimately, the person facing an acid attack is not a victim, but a survivor. They are fighters. Despite facing all this, they have the willpower and the strength to defend themselves and face the world. It is a journey from being a victim to being victorious.

In Chhapaak, you play the partner of an acid attack survivor (played by Deepika). Given that this is your first film together, how did you break the ice with her?

I met Deepika socially before this movie. We interacted during the filming of Dil Dhadakne Do, which also featured Ranveer Singh. He was on the ship (in which important parts of the film were shot) with us for a couple of days. We usually chat and had some conversations. She was on vacation, but we were working (laughs!). The little time I spent with her was wonderful. I am glad to have had the opportunity to work with her, especially in this project. In terms of our on-screen chemistry, this movie highlighted all possible vulnerabilities within each of us. As people, we were emotionally pure and naked facing each other. In addition, when its director is Meghna Gulzar, he takes up half of his work. I think we have done a fair job.

Was it Deepika's idea to include it in this project?

Well, Meghnaji wanted to work with me ever since she saw A death in the gunj . Personally, I have always wanted to work with her, too. Her directorial, Talvar (2015), happens to be one of my favourite films. I have been an ardent admirer of her work and wanted to get a glimpse into her process of filmmaking.

On one hand, Deepika was playing an intense character like Malti and on the other, she was also the co-producer of the film. As a co-actor, how do you think she played both roles?

During the course of the shoot, I never felt that she was the producer, she was always my co-actor. When we were together, our only focus was to get the shot right. I don't think at that time she was thinking what the balance sheets were looking like.