Sunil Grover’s talent and prowess as an actor, are no secret. He has graced the television industry, the film industry, and also the OTT industry with his talent. He is now going to make his debut on ZEE5, with the upcoming show, Sunflower. We interviewed this wonderful actor today, to know more about him and his experience working in one of its kind crime comedy, Sunflower. Read on to know what he shared.
Are you a morning person or a night person?
“Night person. I like to sleep in the morning but cannot wake up early. Unless there are early morning shoots. But I still love mornings. And like not everyone can be with their love, I love morning and sunrise, but somehow cannot wake up early to be with it.”
What are your top three favourite songs?
“All depends on the mood. Party songs when I want to groove, calm songs when I want to relax, and if I want to impress someone, then I will listen to English songs. And among those songs, I love Bob Dylan’s song Blowin In The Wind. And in Hindi, I love Kahin Door Jab Din Dhal Jaaye which is written by Sahir Ludhianvi.”
One thing that makes you angry?
“My own indiscipline.”
What do you call Sunflower in Hindi?
“Surajmukhi or suryamukhi.”
Ever used your star status to get away?
“At times, like at the airport, when people recognize me, some chaos gets created. So at that time, I requested the authorities there to help me clear the chaos. I know it is not a good thing (for the fans) but it becomes necessary to clear the chaos.”
What was the last lie that you said?
“Just now! About the last question!”
If there is really murder in your society, like your upcoming show Sunflower, how will you react to it if you are one of the suspects?
“I know I can never murder someone. So in that case, I will just say my truth, and whatever my point of view is.”
And can you tell us something about the Sunflower poster which has just you in it?
“It is from a sequence in the show, Sunflower. The sequence is about my character, Sonu, and it also has a lot of chaos and intrigue.”
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What is your cheat meal like?
“I don’t find any meal as a cheat meal. I feel like it is okay to have whatever you feel like having. But yeah, there should be portion control. I love Indian sweets, like jalebi and halwa, so for me, that is the cheat meal.”
We’ve mostly seen you portray comic characters on screen, but we want to know how you are in real life
“I am a very boring person in real life. My comic characters are so funny because the writers write them so well, and they make them funny. And I find pleasure in making people laugh, and it feels great when I get work where I get to do that most of the time. I look forward to the opportunity to make people laugh. When I am alone at home, I like being relaxed and peaceful.”
What was the worst comment you received on social media?
“Honestly, I don’t find any comment to be the worst comment. Mostly because the majority of the comments I get are from accounts which do not even have the person’s real identity. Their social media ID is also a random name with some random numbers. So I feel why should I feel sad about a comment from a person whose real identity is not even known to me. When I was new on social media, these things affected me but not anymore. It feels like sometimes some people write those kinds of comments to assert their importance. It does not matter to me. Of course, I always take constructive criticism about my performances.”
Favourite quote that you live by?
“I have four quotes. ‘Live and let live,’ ‘have gratitude,’ ‘have fun in life,’ and ‘work hard.’”
Biggest lesson life has taught you?
“There are many but one important among them is that nothing can be achieved without hard work.”
A celeb you would want to get stuck on an island with?
“I am actually fine with unknown people.”
The silliest thing that you last searched on Google?
“‘Possible side effects after getting COVID vaccine’ and ‘Aristotle’s 10 commandments.’”
Do you have any regrets?
“No, I do not have any regrets.”
One thing you’re guilty of?
“Not really. There is something which I did at a certain point in time and it felt right at the time, so it would not be fair for me to term that thing as ‘guilt’ now. “
Who is your favourite comedian?
“Rajendra Nath. I loved the way he used to make his entry on the screen, in his unique acting style. I also love Keshto Mukherjee. And in Punjabi cinema, I love Mehar Mittal sir.”
If you could switch places with someone for a day, who would it be?
“No one. I am very happy in my space. I can take a big name but then if I fail to understand the responsibilities of that person, I would get into trouble. I am very happy with my life.”
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Tea or Coffee?
“Black coffee. Usually, I drink tea but for some years, I have come to love black coffee. Also when I am at work, I prefer black coffee but when relaxing at home, I prefer tea.”
Gym or yoga?
“I used to do yoga earlier but now I have begun gymming.”
Chhole kulche or pani puri?
“Chhole kulche. I love it!”
What was your initial reaction when you read the script of Sunflower?
“I heard the concept and then I read the script and I was like, ‘Yeh to bahut achha hai!’“
Can you tell us something about your character in Sunflower?
“The character is a very fun one, Sonu, and the script is a brilliant one. And I just had to live my character as per the script. Our director was very clear about how Sonu should have been played, so I followed his instructions on that. I actually took some time to process the manner in which I was expected to play the character. I took time in figuring out the approach to play this character.
“There are many intrigues and twists that this character has in the show. And one of the strongest elements of the character is that he is smart but also very innocent, so it also took me some time to bring that into my character. I also had to lose some weight for the character. And it was definitely a challenge to portray all the moods of Sonu in this series.”
How was the experience shooting during a pandemic?
“The process was not smooth at first but it did eventually get smooth, thanks to the production team. They were maintaining all the guidelines necessary for the precaution. All the things in the set were also being sanitized regularly. The makeup team also used to wear gloves and mask the whole time. Even our costumes used to be washed well before we used them. By the grace of God, everything got done with safety.”
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One Sunflower co-star you would like to work with again?
“All of them, really. I feel lucky that I got to work with these talented actors who are such lovely artists. When you are with such talented people, you love working and doing all the scenes and also get to learn something every time. And in Sunflower, even the off-screen crew, like the production team, camera crew, direction team, everyone was working well as one whole team and giving their 100 per cent. I would love to get an opportunity where I get to work with this team once again.
“In the team, I vibed the most with the writer, Vikas Bahl. It was great to work under his guidance. And this whole journey was memorable.”
Tell us one thing about Vikas Bahl that not many people know
“Maybe I also don’t know that thing. He is someone who is laughing on the sets and having fun but yet, he is so passionate about what he does. A part of his mind is constantly on the script and the scene that we are about to shoot. And when he is joking around, he is parallelly thinking about how to make the scene better. About that parallel thinking, he said one thing very beautifully, which was, “If I did not think now, and only after the scene was done being shot, then what is the use?” And I loved that thought.”
You have worked in so many mediums, TV, movies, and now OTT. Which medium do you like more?
“I love all of them. Each one has its charm. I still love TV just as much, then films have their own structure that I love. And in OTT, we actors get to live a character for a longer time. It surely becomes more challenging to have the audience’s involvement throughout. And this makes it tough for the writers to keep the writing engaging. One thing I love about OTT platforms is that it gives a chance to present longer stories, which can also become a challenge. But that is what its beauty is.”
What is your favourite dialogue or scene from Sunflower?
“I love all the scenes of Sunflower. Each and every scene is written beautifully. And I have many favourite dialogues in the show, but you would need to know the context to understand them. So if I have to select one dialogue among many of my favourites, it would be, “Yeh manjan nahi, manoranjan hai.” People would understand the relevance of the dialogue after they watch the show.”
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3 reasons to watch Sunflower?
“I will only mention two. One is that the script is beautiful and very intricately written, which would make it a fun watch. And the show has some great performers who have justified the characters that they are playing in the show.”
Why the title, Sunflower?
“When we talk about a sunflower, we think of the vibrance related to the flower. A flower, which is very bright and always faces the sun, and when the sun goes down, the sunflowers begin facing each other. But the quality that inspired the name of the show, is the vibrance of it and the happiness it brings.”
Sunflower premieres on ZEE5 on 11 June.
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