They say don't judge a book by its cover. But when it comes to debutant actor Harsh Parekh, you ought to be kidding. I fix an afternoon time to meet the Shakal Pe Mat Ja actor at
Costa in Khar. And no, I wasn't looking for a man who'd shock me wearing a burkha (that's his look going by the poster image). As I wait in the pleasant
Sunday breeze for him to turn up, I see a man taking his bandana off, a helmet in one hand and walking straight towards me as if the scene had just come out
of Baazigar, except, Harsh has his trademark rockstar long hair that he has let loose. Then he orders his favourite cappuccino, sips it, talks about
his passion for music, more music and movies. He looks to his left and right, gets up, shakes my hand, wears his bandana, gets off the stairs on to his
bullet bike which makes loud noise that's ever lasting as I transcribe his take on Shakal Pe Mat Ja and lot's more. It's like he came, he saw and he
is just about to conquer the big screen in a few hours from now. Presenting you Harsh Parekh.
"I've done a lot of theatre and the fear of being in front of the large audience always excited me"
I'm into music. I'm a sound engineer. I always had this keenness for sound and music, post which I did my sound engineering from the Australian institute
school of audio engineering, post which I went into film post production. That's when I began my career into films. My first film was Kaminey. Then
came Ishqiya, Chance Pe Dance, LSD, Raajneeti, etc. I saw myself doing something more creative than I already was. In my school and college, I've done
a lot of theatre and the fear of being in front of the large audience always excited me. So finding myself in front of the camera doesn't astonish me and
thus the chance to work in Shakal Pe Mat Ja had to be grabbed.
"SPMJ has craziness and madness written all over it"
Pe Mat Jaa is a small budget movie but the concept is big. Tere Bin Laden was a satire take on terrorism and that's what we've tried to attempt, a
bit different of course but similar view points. A lot of small budget films are doing well in the market and the packaging of this film is done keeping in
mind today's youth and the urban audiences. I mean, SPMJ is a humorous movie and people will like it. It's crazy, funny and madness written all over it.
"I met Shubh while he was acting in Nakshatra and that's when he spotted me with my long hair and rockstar looks"
Shubh was acting in this film called Nakshatra. That film was in post production in Future Works where I was handling the sound department. That's
when he met me for the first time. But while he was scripting this film, he recalled me with my long hair and the rockstar looks. So in the film too I was
playing a wannabe rockstar. He called me and the rest was Shakal Pe Mat Ja. That's how he casted me in the film.
"I will never leave an opportunity where I can get a chance to perform on a stage with my band"
Not sound but music is my passion. As music was my passion, I took a career into sound. We've seen a lot of
people shifting careers but my passion will always be music. I will never leave an opportunity where I can get a chance to perform on a stage with my band.
Music of this film is done by Salim-Sulaiman and I've always admired both of them. The little abusive rap song you've heard - the title track of Shakal Pe
Mat Ja, is my best song.
"Shakal Pe Mat Ja too has its own niche, own style"
With a lot of big entertainers like Ready, Dabangg, Bodyguard and Ra.One, people also want to see something refreshing, new and out of the box.
On the flip side, films like Dev D, Udaan, Tere Bin Laden, etc had created its own niche too. So Shakal Pe Mat Ja too has its own niche, own
style. I think it'll work with the youth big time and yes, people will never say no to comedy.
"I've had most number of costume changes but I've also landed into a lot of trouble wearing that burkha"
There's a lovely story of me and the burkha. Actually, there is a scene in the
film where I'm hiding away from the cops and so had to wear the burkha. I am a suspected terrorist and that's why the costume. But there are different
avatars of me in the film, like in a lot of montages I'm wearing my shorts and my metal print t-shirts with my hair open and smoking on the streets of Delhi.
I'm wearing a lot of Che Guevara t-shirts and in lot of other scenes I'm running around in a cleaner's bumper uniform. I've had most number of costume
changes but I've also landed into a lot of trouble wearing that burkha but all in good humour.