Danish Husain takes his time in answering questions. He listens intently, articulates, and then delivers a stellar elocution of his views. Perhaps, this is the same characteristic that shines through in his performances, be it on stage or film. His latest, Mee Raqsam, was widely appreciated, and as is the norm with the surge of social media, led to memes and some publications taking cheeky digs, all in jest.
He shared some of those messages on his social media, too, enjoying the attention. But does it create undue tensions or rivalries with his peers? Referring to comparisons with fellow actor Pankaj Tripathi who delivered Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl, he says, “The Best Dad Award compliment was quite flattering and when flattering memes come my way, I do feel good about it. Two days later after this message, I ran into Pankaj Tripathi as we live in the same complex. There was no awkwardness; we had a good laugh about it. We do realise that we get auditioned for similar roles, but I have never felt any rivalry; that’s not how I function. I have huge respect for these actors and feel happy when they succeed,” he shares.
Elaborating on how memes are an effective tool to reinforce a film’s message in public memory, he says, “Memes have the same effect as jokes or anecdotes – they tell a story pictorially.”
For Husain, who is credited with reviving the endangered art of Dastaangoi, or storytelling, the outreach of the medium does not matter; what matters is the process of creation. “OTT will always be far ahead in terms of reach, as opposed to cinemas or theatre. But when you look at the creation process, all productions require rigour and dedication. You create a piece of work with a vision and passion, and that is the same across all media,” he says.
Flattery galore, there is bound to be trolling as social media comes with its side-effects. A self-confessed “not that notorious a celeb”, he does get his fair share of trolls. “I generously block people on social media. Trolls only have an agenda and in principle they are not even your followers, or don’t know your work. I don’t need to engage with that; there are enough battles,” he says.
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