Animal has emerged as a blockbuster. The performance of Ranbir Kapoor has been appreciated big time but even the supporting actors have got their share of praise. Siddhant Karnick is no exception. As Varun, the brother-in-law of Ranvijay (Ranbir Kapoor), he left a huge mark despite limited screen time. This year has been significant for the actor as he was seen as Vibhishan in Adipurush followed by Mrunal Thakur’s manipulative husband in the web series Made In Heaven and finally Animal. Bollywood Hungama spoke exclusively to this articulate and dashing actor about Animal, his experience, etc.EXCLUSIVE: Siddhant Karnick ECSTATIC with the response to Animal; reveals, “NOBODY other than Ranbir Kapoor knew the entire story; we would exchange our tracks and try to fill in the blanks”
Congratulations on Animal! The film is performing beyond expectations. What feedback have you personally received for your role?
It was nothing like I had ever experienced in my life before for any work that I had done. I wouldn’t say it’s overwhelming. Every actor has this desire that they’ll be cast in a film that would have a bawaal and would lead to a spike in their career. I always knew that yeh din aayega. Mera number aayega. I am still not sure mera number aaya ki nahin but box office pe toh bahut bada number aaya!
You were in Jhansi over the weekend for your play. Although you have done a lot of work in the past, but Animal has been a different beast. Did people recognize you more in these last few days?
When Animal was released, I was busy with the rehearsal of my play. It was at the airport that I realized (the impact). Usually, people recognize me but this time, I saw that double the number of people recognized me!
At the security check, the officer saw me and asked, ‘Sir, aap?’. I replied, ‘Haan, main hoon’ (laughs)! He asked his supervisor, ‘Inke saath main photo le sakta hoon?’. The supervisor also recognized me and gave him permission. I told him, ‘Aapne apne supervisor se toh puch liya. Mujhse bhi puchiye’ (laughs)! Of course, I gave the picture, but I realized the excitement that this film has created. Also, after clicking the picture, the official requested me to skip the queue and directed me to the VIP queue. This had never happened before. It’s a great example of how I have been shifted to the VIP area of the industry (smiles).
How did you bag the film?
I have been working for 20 years and for every project, including voiceovers, I had to audition or there would be some sort of interview or test. Animal was an exception. I got a call from Sandeep Reddy Vanga sir through the casting director. I met him and our meeting went on for 2 hours at the T-Series office. He told me about the character graph and a very important scene involving my character. He played the music score as he explained the contents of the scene. After 2 hours, he asked me to talk to his brother Pranay Reddy Vanga, the film’s producer. I thanked him and met Pranay sir, who immediately started talking about dates. I told him that I’d love to be a part of the project and asked when I have to audition. He told me that Sandeep sir had already selected me! I was so used to the audition that I was stunned. For me, this is my indication of success that I am being cast based on my previous work. This is the first time it has happened and hence, I feel blessed.
How was it working with a genius like Sandeep Reddy Vanga?
Every director has his own process. It's my job to understand my director's process, instead of the director understanding my process and adapting to it. I want the director's job to be less stressful when it comes to me. Sandeep sir's process is very different in the sense that nobody other than Ranbir knew what the entire story of Animal was. All the other actors tried to figure out the plot. Hum apne role ke baare mein toh acchi tareeke se jaante the. But when it came to the larger picture, we had no idea. We would exchange our tracks and try to fill in the blanks. We had no idea about Bobby Deol’s track, for instance. I knew Triptii Dimri was in the film as we were shooting on the same day but didn’t know about her character graph. Sandeep sir consciously does that as he makes edgy movies. And a good way to get his actors edgy is to not reveal all his cards to them. Moreover, he was a different person when we would meet him for breakfast. On set, he would completely be in the zone. It was a fresh and absolute learning experience.
The scene involving you and Ranbir Kapoor at Anil Kapoor’s birthday bash was damn impactful as it was a long and gripping one. Viewers are not used to such lengthy confrontational sequences in movies nowadays. How was it shooting that sequence?
That scene was around 3 or 3 ½ minutes long. When we first shot it, it was 13 minutes long! It was a 20-page scene. We were sure even then that it would hold the audience. To shoot such a dramatic 13-minute-long scene was the best thing for an actor to do. Sandeep sir approached it like a play. It was shot from different angles, but it was done from beginning to end every time. Sandeep sir is also the editor. So, he had already figured out how it was going to play out on screen and how he was going to cut it. It was one of the best scenes I have shot not just because of content but also Ranbir. What an actor he is! He’s known as a superstar, but people don’t know how professional this man also is.
We were shooting in the summer in the Pataudi Palace. We were wearing black suits, and it was afternoon time. The AC was kept off as the film was being shot in sync sound. My close shot was pending. Ranbir could have gone back to his vanity van. It’s completely understandable. But Ranbir, in his turtleneck and black suit, gave me cues from behind the camera as much as he did when he was in front of the camera, so that I could give back the same energy. That is a mark of a true, professional actor. And it shows. The scene was high on energy as we were invested so much in it.
There has been a criticism that not much is talked about your character in the second half. We don’t know if Balbir (Anil Kapoor) was even aware that his son-in-law is no more. Your thoughts?
I don’t think so. There’s a beautiful scene in the second half where Ranbir’s character confesses to his sister that he has killed Varun. The entire film is the protagonist’s point of view. Hence, it is difficult to get somebody else’s perspective. Sandeep sir has left it very intelligently for Animal Park! He has introduced Varun’s son. Ab woh ladka baap ki maut ka badla lega ya nahin lega, yeh humein sequel mein dekhna hai.
Will you be back in the sequel? Maybe, you can play Varun’s son once he grows up. Animal, anyway, shows older Ranvijay, indicating that at some point, Varun’s son must have turned into an adult…
I really hope. I would love to be a part of this project again if there’s space for me and if Sandeep sir feels so. It’s an important movie in Indian cinema. We are getting carried away by the box office numbers, controversies, etc. But in today’s times, the audience saw a 3 hours 23 minutes long film aur unhe pata bhi nahin chala ki time kahan chala gaya. This might bring back the trend of lengthier but engrossing films.
You played the role of an abusive partner in Animal and also Made In Heaven. Do you fear being typecast?
You give me the role; I’ll play it differently. Anik in Made In Heaven was a different kind of abusive partner than Varun in Animal. Every actor has a certain USP. My USP is that I bring layers in my characters in the sense that no two characters, although of the same destination, their journeys will be mapped up differently by me. Hence, I’ll welcome being stereotyped!
I have done a film called Afghan Snow, co-starring Triptii Dimri. Also, I have been writing an international film. My director and my co-writers are from France. It’s going to be an Indo-French project and I am also on board as a creative producer. That will take time. In 2025, I expect the film to go on floors and it’ll be out only in 2026.
Other than that, I have no work lined up after this. I am going to be honest about it. It is our fault as actors that we do not talk about our vulnerabilities and insecurities. We only talk about glamour, ‘Iske baad meri yeh film aane waali hai, kuch pipeline mein hai’ jabki kuch pipeline mein hota nahin hai. Everything will happen now based on the work I did this year. I am very secure of the fact that I have acted for 20 years, and I’ll work for another 10 years brilliantly (smiles).
More Pages: Animal Box Office Collection , Animal Movie Review
BOLLYWOOD NEWS - LIVE UPDATES
Catch us for latest Bollywood News, New Bollywood Movies update, Box office collection, New Movies Release , Bollywood News Hindi, Entertainment News, Bollywood Live News Today & Upcoming Movies 2024 and stay updated with latest hindi movies only on Bollywood Hungama.