Hi Gourav, Congratulations on your bagging Extrapolations where you play one of the lead alongside some of Hollywood’s biggest names. When do you start shooting?
I’ve started shooting already! I am in New York and we’ve been shooting for for the last three days.
How is the experience?
It seems unreal. To be in the same anthology as actors I’ve always admired like Meryl Streep, Kit Harringston, Sienna Miller…
It can’t get any better than this?
It can’t! But I hope it can . This is my second international project and my first in New York. This is my first visit to America.
Have you been able to do any sightseeing?
Not much .The Covid rules are very strict on the sets. Every morning when I reach for shooting I’ve to get tested.It makes things very tense.
You mean, instead of going over your lines for the day on the car you are tense about the Covid test. Kahin positive ho gaya toh?
Jee han. Every morning. But it’s all for the best. I also got my third jab, the Pfizer, when I arrived here in NY.
You must be the first Indian to get the third jab?
Arrey nahin, Sir. I am sure there are many . Every country has its own Covid rules. I am sure it’s all for the best.
How has the shooting being so far?
Highly educational. I am yet to get a full measure of the level of professionalism here.The atmosphere at the shooting is highly conducive to good work.
I can’t wait to see your face on the poster along with Meryl Streep?
(Laughs) I don’t know about the poster. But yes, the fact that I’ve been signed for a lead in such a prestigious project proves I am going about my career the right way. But I’m yet to get a hang of inter-continental shooting. My agents had to say no to an offer in the UK because I had to be here in the US for Extrapolations.
Don’t worry you will soon get a hang of global shooting, like Priyanka Chopra?
I hope so . I am working towards it.Luckily the roles that I am getting are interesting even as they take me to different parts of the world.
Yes, the Indian parts are going to Indians, not like Peter Sellers playing an Indian in The Party?
Ha ha. There was a time when even Black characters were played by White actors. That has changed. The producers of Extrapolations saw me in The White Tiger and offered me a role in this anthology.
And you play a car driver named Gourav?
I play a transporter. My character knows his way around. There is this tendency to cast me as the underprivileged lower-class Indian in international project. Maybe they see me that way without meeting me. Once they meet me they know I don’t need to be typecast as the Indian underdog.
The Indian underdog living a dream in NY right now?
Ha ha. I’ve been provided my own apartment with a kitchen. Today is my day off from shooting so I am making lunch for myself.
What are you cooking?
Just eggs . It’s no fun cooking a proper meal for yourself. I am a halfway decent cook. But I’d rather eat than cook. Too much performance anxiety accompanies cooking. You wait for everyone to say that the spices are right, the salt is not too much, etc. I’d rather have comments coming in for my performances.
Are you homesick?
Too early for that. After shooting ends I will stay on a week to see the US. Ahhi toh it’s just my apartment and the location and sometimes to the Central Park.
What do you return home to?
To a rom-com for Excel Entertainment with Siddhant Chaturvedi and Ananya Pandey. I can’t tell you much about that except that it will surprise you.