Free Press Journal

I still do stammer sometimes, says Sooraj Pancholi


Actor Sooraj Pancholi failed to impress us with his acting skills, but for Sooraj, the road to stardom has not been an easy one. Acting runs in his blood as he hails from the family of dignified actors. Hence, anyone can say that to become an actor is quite an obvious thing for Sooraj. But, it is not that simple as it looks. He has overcome many challenges to fulfil his dream of making big in the Indian film industry.
The actor says that he has had a history of stuttering, which is his best-kept secret so far. He admits that he has struggled with the problem ever since he was a young kid, but has now almost overcome it.
The talented actor, who made his stellar Bollywood debut in 2015 with Hero explains, “I still do stammer sometimes, but I’ve practised hard and become conscious about it” adding that he only stutters now when he is with friends and his guard is down. “That’s when I’m more relaxed and not scared of being judged,” he informs.
It was definitely tough for Sooraj to deal with the problem but acting has been therapeutic for him in a way. “Long dialogues make me mindful that I need to get a fix on stuttering, and not fumble. I see stammering as just a small issue in one’s head, and one can overcome it,” he says.
Sooraj has had this attitude ever since he was a kid. He used his friends and other people mocking him to overpower stuttering. “You can take it the way you want — positively or negatively,” he says. While his friends made fun of him, Sooraj says that his actor parents Aditya Pancholi and Zarina Wahab, and sister Sana Pancholi never pointed out the problem to him.
The actor confesses that he didn’t care that he stuttered till he turned 17, and gave a career in acting a serious thought. “That’s when I became conscious and started thinking about speech, dialogue delivery, and so on,” he informs. Interestingly, the actor overcame stuttering by himself with no speech therapy or teachers coming to his aid. “I live alone so I read out my dialogues or newspaper headlines very loudly. I think you are your own best teacher.”

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Talking about being nervous at media events, he says, “I don’t prepare a speech. As long as I’m being myself, nothing else matters to me. If I have to stammer and get stuck, I will. It’s all right. We are all humans and all have flaws, and this is not a permanent problem,”
Sooraj is aware that Hrithik Roshan has had the same problem, too. “I think he’s the best example of how good you can be despite flaws. There aren’t many actors who can speak like him. He’s pretty perfect. That should be a motivation for people who stammer,” he concludes.