It’s nearly the end of a year that has roiled Bollywood in more ways than one, and Pankaj Tripathi has already appeared in 3 movies.
Next week, he will be seen in the second season of Amazon Prime Video’s crime saga Mirzapur, where he plays the role of Akhandanand “Kaleen” Tripathi.
As I looked up the actor’s body of work ahead of this interview, I knew I had to ask him how he chooses his roles—and whether he’s convinced about all of them.
While he made his movie debut in 2004 as a minor character in Abhishek Bachchan’s Run, it’s after 2010 that Tripathi has done most of his work. In the past 10 years alone, Tripathi has appeared in a staggering 70 films and TV shows, averaging almost 7 appearances a year.
“At times, I’ve said yes to a project only because I wanted to hang out at the location where it was shot,” the 44-year-old says over a Zoom call.
The actor who almost always lifts any film that he’s in, knows that some of these movies may not be the most path-breaking but is clear about the different reasons for which he chooses them.
“I plan detailed itineraries once I know which location we’re going to be holed up in. I look up restaurants and museums and other sites of interest beforehand,” he chuckles. “Food is most important.”
Ahead of the release of Mirzapur S2, the actor spoke to HuffPost India about why he’s so prolific, discovering the joys of a break and his attraction towards complicated characters.
How have the past few months been for you? Like some people, have you become over-productive? Or do you have a renewed respect for the joys of being lazy?
(Laughs) I’ve been spending time asking myself: what was I chasing for this long? What does that ‘end goal’ look like? Why was I working as much as I was? Now, I’ve decided to explore myself. I stay away from the city: I’m at Madh Island. So every evening I just go for a walk on a different road, discovering new nooks and crannies around....