Narendra Jha is a well-known actor in Indian cinema. He turned into a star almost overnight with a powerful role in Haider. He is now busy for his upcoming projects like Father Iqbal, Force 2, Raees, Kabil and The End.
For Jha, acting was never part of the plan. “I never wanted to be an actor. I was preparing for civil services exams. And after preparing for a year, I decided that I want to go for acting. I used to participate in theatre but I never thought that I would make my career in it,” he tells Guardian 20.
In this rapidly growing Indian film industry, where every year new talents are being launched, Jha believes that hardwork and talent is the only way to succeed. “I think in every field you need to be talented and hard-working. And in the same way, if you have talent then Bollywood and television both welcome you with open hands. In this industry, you have less work and more people which becomes a challenge many times. But I believe that whatever place I have earned here, it is because of my talent, hard work and the support from the Almighty which is much needed. I think blessings work,” he says.
Jha started his career from television serials like Captain House and Itihas and he says, “I think acting is same in all the mediums. But the preparation is entirely different. When you are working in a film, there are many workshops conducted for preparing for your role and even many rehearsals but in television, there is no workshop done because the medium is very different from films. In a daily soap, you have to work very fast. Every day you are assigned to contribute a certain span of time to do your character and you have a limited time to perform. And in films, you are not tied to a limited time period, you prepare a lot for your work, that is why the actor thinks and prepares a lot for his role in the film.”
Jha who was also seen in Mohenjo Daro recently believes that every film brings some responsibility with it. He says, “I only want to say about Mohenjo Daro that I got the opportunity to work with a talented team. With historical films, audience knows about the details of the particular event and that is why, whenever any film is made on historical background, it becomes a topic of discussion. But I believe that people should not forget that it is also an entertainment business. If the historical facts do not get distorted, and it does not hurt your emotions, such films ought to be seriously taken.”
“Working with Shyam Benegal is a treat. He is a living legend. And when you start working with him you realise how legends are made. He is very disciplined at this age. It is remarkable. He is a star at the set and very down to earth. He is very particular about the minute details of the characters.”
Jha who has worked with the renowned director, Shyam Benegal says that he is very fortunate to have worked with him twice. “Working with him is a treat. He is a living legend. And when you start working with him then you realise how legends are made. He is very disciplined at this age. It is remarkable. He is a star in the set and very down to earth. He is very particular about the minute details of the characters.”
Jha will be soon seen in Force 2, where he plays the character of the chief of RAW. “It is an exciting role. John Abraham is my co-star in this film,” says Jha.
Whereas in Raees, he plays the opposite of Force 2. He says, “I am playing the role of a don in Mumbai. The character is an undeclared king of the city. I am preparing for many other roles which are scheduled to release by the end of the year.”
In a nutshell, he describes the way he juggles with various characters, “When I do any film I try to focus on only one character. When you prepare for a role, you know its nuances and then do it. It becomes part of your daily life until the director says “pack up”.”