'Success is not easily gained. Even if it is, it's very hard to sustain it.'
National Award-winning Bengali actor Riddhi Sen has done only bit roles in Hindi films like Kahaani, Chauranga and Bhoomi.
But he plays a pivotal part in Pradeep Sarkar's Helicopter Eela where he plays Kajol's son.
"I became a helicopter son because my mom is super cool," Riddhi, the youngest actor to win the National Award for Best Actor (he was just 19) for the Bengali film Nagarkirtan, tells Patcy N/Rediff.com.
Helicopter Eela tells the story of a mother and a son.
'Helicopter parents' are those who hover over their children, basically poking into their children's business. It's what Indian mothers are like.
Here, the story is about giving space -- space is required in any relationship, be it between a husband and wife, or brothers and sisters...
When you grow up with a single parent, the bond becomes closer. Either the child becomes more responsible or gets swayed.
In this film, Vivaan is more responsible.
The mother is helping her kid to grow up and he is helping her grow up!
We don't treat parents like human beings. They have their problems as well.
Vivaan tries to make Eela realise that her job is not to be a mother, she has better things to do in life.
What was the shooting atmosphere like?
We all know Dada (Pradeep Sarkar) is an amazing film-maker, but he has a heart of gold.
Every other person who has worked in the industry -- be it a technician or an actor -- has said, 'Dada has brought me to the industry.'
At the launch, Neha (Dhupia) ma'am was saying how Dada brought her to the industry; her first flight experience was because of him. This man's contribution to the industry is incredible.
To work with such an amazing person is beautiful because he doesn't get angry or shout.
Kajol ma'am's sense of humour is superb.
So when these two people are on the sets, the vibes are amazing.
Does your mother relate to Eela?
No, it's the opposite!
I became a helicopter son because my mom is super cool. I keep calling my mother through the day and asking her where she is going, what she is doing!
Whatever I am today is because of my parents. They made me understand that acting is a subject and you need to study for it and devote time to it.
They helped me follow my art.
I always wanted to be an actor and they supported me.
The kind of bonding I share with my parents is amazing.
We treat each other like best friends.
I share everything, more or less, with them.
I try to look at them as human beings; they can also make mistakes, they have their own problems too.
I talk to my parents about my problems.
If there is a problem in the family, they involve me and take my opinion.
It's really important to communicate with your children and consider their opinions. Children do a lot of things just to get their parents' attention since parents are so busy.
Your parents Kaushik and Reshmi are actors in Kolkata. Did that make acting your first choice?
My parents work in the movies and theatre. My father has a theatre group (Swapnasandhani) which is 25 years old.
I grew up in that ambience and the fact of being someone else always attracted me.
After a point of time, my parents realised I was wasting my time doing Physics, Chemistry, Maths because I was not going to pursue that anyway. So after Standard 10, they shifted me to a private school so that I get more time to focus on what I was doing.
Since your parents are so liberal, did you ever misuse your freedom?
I always knew that with that kind of freedom came responsibility.
Because my parents are actors, I have seen them go through ups and downs in life, I have seen them deal with failure and success.
Observing them helped me to deal with things better.
Success is not easily gained. Even if it is, it's very hard to sustain it.
How do you manage without your parents when you are in Mumbai?
I do manage, but I lose things.
I bring a suitcase of clothes and go back with half a suitcase.
I get homesick. Even if I get three or four days off, I fly home to Kolkata.
You have done Bengali as well as Hindi. How different are they?
Regional films are doing really well. This year, most of the National Awards went to regional films, especially Tamil, Marathi, Gujarati and Bengali.
I got an award for a Bengali film.
Since I have worked in both industries, the difference is economics.
The Mumbai industry has a huge economy.
As far as the quality of work is concerned, good and bad cinema are made in both places, regional and Hindi cinema.
While doing Bhoomi, Aditi (Rao Hydari) and I were taking about this.
Because she has worked in the Tamil and Malayalam industry, she gave an interesting answer: She said the difference is created by the director and producer.
So as long as the people who are making the film are straight and sure about their outlook, the set is good.