Sumeet Vyas is a name that becomes synonymous with the web series Permanent Roommates. He became the hero for the millennial generation as Micki [Mikesh] and now he is the ‘hero’ of Kareena Kapoor Khan. He essays the role of Kareena Kapoor Khan’s leading man in Veere Di Wedding and shares screen space with actresses like Sonam Kapoor, Swara Bhaskar and Shikha Talsania.
Speaking on his role in Veere Di Wedding, Sumeet Vyas plays the role of Rishabh who proposes to Kareena Kapoor Khan in the film. As he stated, it is one of the most important characters in Kareena aka Kalindi’s life and also in the film. The entire film revolves around this sub-plot of Rishabh and Kalindi’s marriage and how the ups and downs that the duo have to face amidst the backdrop of big fat Indian wedding.
While we have known him as a TV star, web star and even a film star… here’s Sumeet Vyas discussing his journey in the world of entertainment exclusively with Bollywood Hungama.
From Woh Hue Na Humare and Palkon Ki Chaon Mein to Permanent Roommates to playing Kareena Kapoor Khan’s leading man in Veere Di Wedding, how would you describe your journey in the entertainment industry?
It’s been lucky. If I had to describe it in a phrase, then I would say, I have enjoyed the process more. It was a rather fulfilling process. A major part of work that I have done has been theatre – one medium that has really kept me going over the years. In fact, I became a little more serious about media, films and television post English Vinglish I would say. That’s when I had really started taking seriously, until then I was very happy doing theatre. I was doing other shows etc. to essentially make money. Before English Vinglish, I was doing TV shows but there were no plans as such. I wanted to do something by the side whilst I was doing theatre. But I didn’t think whether I should be doing TV or films. Post English Vinglish, I realized that this medium is I can enjoy, as much as theatre, perhaps a little different but still fun! The reach that it [films] has is far larger than others. I felt the need to reach out to people and that I should do more roles that is acceptable. There was a paradigm shift in my approach towards work.
How would you describe your experience of working in Veere Di Wedding, a star like Kareena Kapoor Khan and Sonam Kapoor?
It has been lovely working with them. Obviously I had more work with Kareena than with Sonam. I really enjoyed working with her because she is a thorough professional. She comes to the sets prepared, she is on cue, she is there to give you cues. It is very inspiring to see how motivated and how charged she is. Her commitment to her craft is very inspiring indeed. She is very focused. Once she completes her work, she will go back and not indulge in any other extra-curricular activities per say. I am also a little like that and I appreciate when I can work with people like that.
Did you ever feel overshadowed by Kareena Kapoor Khan? Did you ever feel that the screen space would be too less?
Honestly, NO! I don’t think like that. I think it’s how people approach their role. I am pretty sure of what I do and I don’t think anybody can overshadow me. In that sense I am not skeptical about these things. I had read the script and I have shot the film. I have been doing it for a while, so there’s a rough idea of how much screen time I have. I know how relevant my part is to the plot. If it was just an arm candy part, I wouldn’t have signed this film. So in that sense, I am very cautious before signing up a film. And beyond, I don’t think we can control these things. If somebody decided to cut your part or something for a larger purpose, may be some part needs to be shortened or some role needs to be increased then these are not in anyone’s control. But I had rather not think of those things because they won’t help me. They will only demotivate me. I had rather focus on what I have and be cautious before I pick on projects and give it my best. If one is good at what they do, then, if you are there for one scene then people will remember you. In that sense, I feel like I should rather focus on what I do rather than fear of being overshadowed.
Was there one scene or one quality of your character Rishabh that motivated you to take up this role?
There is no one scene as such! There were several scenes that gave me the room to perform. There were bunch of scenes.
So how are you planning to take ahead your Bollywood journey from here on?
I always wanted to be an actor. I don’t want to just jump to opportunities and sign films left, right and center. The whole idea is to do a different film from your last work. The last film I did was High Jack, which was very, very different from Veere Di Wedding. Before that I did Ribbon which was an art-house film. The idea is whatever I do next should be different from what I have done, so that it is fun for me also. It is no fun to play the same character again and again in films.
How will you take the journey of writing ahead?
I will only do it when I feel that I feel the genuine need to tell a story and something I will be excited about. To be honest, I am not surviving on the money that I make from writing. Writing doesn’t pay me as much as an acting job. So it is definitely a passion-driven side and I want to keep it that way. Like right now, I am writing the second season of Tripling which I am really excited about. We took our own sweet time to write the second season because we didn’t want to take it ahead unless we had a genuinely interesting story to tell. We didn’t want to do it just for the heck of it. So this time we had new plans for the three characters. Even in terms of writing film scripts, I want to explore different genres. I want to do thriller, action and do genres that make me uncomfortable. And that’s the fun of it. It will be far from Love Per Square Feet [his last scripted film]
Veere Di Wedding is a full on commercial film where you had to dance to quintessential Punjabi track. How did you find that experience? Are you included towards dancing in Bollywood films?
I am very comfortable with dancing. Although I haven’t done much of it in films! This time I had to not be drunk and do the steps right. I was actually very conscious when I did it [for Veere Di Wedding] because I was dancing with pros like Kareena and Sonam. They have done it so many times for their films. In fact, I rehearsed for more days than these guys because I wanted to make sure that I don’t look like a fool. I really enjoy dancing and I have to explore more of the dancing skills. In my head, I am killing it every time.
We haven’t seen you on TV for a long time; would you like to return to small screen any time soon?
Not any time soon! Actually, TV requires a lot of time commitment which I don’t think I can commit to only one thing now. I am doing so many other things that I am really enjoying. I am doing stuff on the web, films. TV unfortunately doesn’t allow us to do so many things at one point. That’s one more reason why I don’t prefer TV, especially mainstream television for sure! If an interesting project comes by [episodic or otherwise] I would love to do it. I am not someone who would judge content on television. That’s unfair! I think there are a lot of credible people on television and they work very hard! They are very good at what they do.
Since you have worked in all three mediums – web, TV and films, which one do you personally prefer the most?
I am focusing more on films but I am also working on web. Earlier films used to take lot longer to complete than they do right now. They used to a year or six months to make one film. These days for the same picture, only 30-40 day commitment is required. Considering that you are in that place, you can manage your time very well. Simultaneously you can concentrate on web and also do a film. The exciting part is that they are very different and even the topic that they approach. So in an ideal situation I would like to do both.