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The Rediff Interview / Sharman Joshi

'One can see a lot of Chetan Bhagat in his books'

October 08, 2008

A still from Hello.

Sharman Joshi provided a lot of laughs in Style and Golmaal, and made us love him in Rang De Basanti [Images]. Now, he is back in Atul Agnihotri's film adaptation, called Hello, of Chetan Bhagat's best-selling novel, One Night @ A Call Centre.

Also starring Gul Panag, Amrita Arora [Images], Sohail Khan [Images], Isha Kopikkar and Sharat Saxena, with cameos from Salman Khan [Images] and Katrina Kaif [Images], Hello sounds very interesting.

Sharman talks to Nithya Ramani about the film, and much more.

How did Hello happen?

Atul approached me with the screenplay of Hello. I had read Chetan's first book Five Point Someone. When Atul told me that he is making a film on his second book, One Night @ A Call Centre, I was interested. I hadn't read it then. When Atul gave me the screenplay, he also gave me with a copy of the book. I loved it and agreed to do the film.

I like the concept of Hello. The clarity with which Atul wrote the screenplay made things easier.

What is your character about?

I play Shyam, a middle class ambitious boy, who is not ready to take risks in life as his financial status doesn't allow him to. His attitude also affects his personal life.

Do you identify with Shyam?

No. As long as I like the script and the character makes sense to me, I don't think identifying with the character is important. I understand the role and I know is expected of me.

How was the experience of working with Atul?

He is a very dedicated director. He has put his heart and soul into making this film and it shows. It was a healthy give and take situation.

Are you a voracious reader? What kind of books do you read?

I am not a voracious reader. I rarely read books -- only when they are highly recommended. The last book I read was A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry.

How do you find Chetan as a writer?

He has a simple style of writing and story telling. He is witty and writes in a very witty fashion. One can see a lot of him in his books.

Atul's first film, Dil Ne Jise Apna Kaha, was a flop.

I am sure the past doesn't affect the present or future. I was satisfied with everything and I knew he had a lot of passion for this film. I hope everyone loves the film.

What next?

Onir's Sorry Bhai with Sanjay Suri, Chitrangadha, Boman Irani and Shabana Azmi [Images]. Then there is Ramesh Taurani's Tho Baat Pakhi and Farooq Kabir's Allah Ke Bande.

Why weren't you a part of Rohit Shetty's Golmaal Retunrs?

There were date issues. I really miss being a part of that film.

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