Rahul Roy suffered a cerebrovascular stroke while he was shooting for his web film L.A.C - Live The Battle in Kargil where the mercury had dropped to around -13°C. Roy, best known for starring in the 1990 musical blockbuster Aashiqui, still had a day’s shoot left when he had to be airlifted to Srinagar. From there he was brought back to Mumbai. He is currently under treatment at the Nanavati hospital. The cerebrovascular stroke resulted in a condition called Aphasia and due to this the 52-year-old actor is currently unable to form proper sentences.
A few days back, we had spoken to the actor and he was might excited about his upcoming musical thriller Sayonee where he will be seen as a tough baddie. Excerpts from that interview:
Do you remember your first audition?
It was for a song shot for Aashiqui in a forest which was a complete disaster for me!
How do you look back on your first co-star Anu Aggarwal?
She has gone through a lot and has suffered much, but she is a fighter. We meet off and on and do shows together sometimes. I will be always there for her.
You were an overnight heartthrob and then kind of slipped into oblivion. How did you deal with that phase of your life?
It was tough as offers started to dwindle and it is extremely difficult for a Bollywood actor to find an alternative career. Nothing else really works. But Bigg Boss bailed me out (Roy also won the first season of the popular TV reality show Bigg Boss in 2006). But I was never serious about my career. Also, I left because I really wanted to get married and start a family and settle in Australia.
Looking back, do you regret some of your movie choices?
There are a few but I wouldn’t like to name them. I had hopes from Jaanam, Ghazab Tamasha, Junoon, Megha, but I was a bit disappointed by their box office results.
How do you think Bollywood has changed over the years, especially for outsiders?
There are definitely more opportunities for youngsters now — be it on the OTT platforms and in the movies. A lot of new faces are being launched these days. Although it has always been tad easy for star kids to get a good launch, sustaining your career is another matter altogether. And that is as challenging and as difficult to a star kid as it is to an outsider.
How do you think OTT is changing the scene?
It is a good avenue for producers who can recover their investments fast, especially with the pandemic raging and the theatres being shut for so long. OTT platforms are also a great option for smaller films to reach out to a wider audience. However, I must admit, I am struggling to understand today’s films, film music and the content.
You play a don in the movie. How did you work on your look for the role?
I play the role of a don in Russia who leads a gang of sex addicts! I have got golden braids in the movie and I am hoping that will turn heads!
How was it shooting in Russia?
The Russia shoot was very difficult as it was very cold there and with multiple retakes it was very arduous for me and we had to shoot in some trying weather conditions.
How was it working with so many debutants in a film?
The debutant directors Nitin Kumar Gupta and Abhay Singhal are very talented and have made a wonderful musical thriller with the hit song Sayonee by Junoon as its backdrop. The lead actors Tanmay Singh and Muskaan Sethi are very promising and they have done a wonderful job as well.
Would you do Bengali films?
If I get the opportunity I will certainly do it.
Get well soon, Rahul.