Manoj Bajpayee, at the 54th IFFI in Goa, sheds light on his cinematic choices, reflecting on his preference for indie films over mainstream cinema. In a candid conversation, he unveils his journey in the industry, highlighting the highs he experienced with select mainstream films like Satya (1998), Raajneeti (2010), and Satyamev Jayate (2018).
Expressing gratitude for the love received for his recent OTT releases, Gulmohar and Sirf Ek Bandaa Kafi Hai, Bajpayee acknowledges the rarity of experiencing the same euphoria within a theater setting. He attributes his limited involvement in mainstream cinema to his early desire to champion independent directors and promote independent cinema.
Bajpayee emphasizes that mainstream filmmakers struggled to conceptualize roles for him beyond the stereotypical villain. In response, he strategically ventured into mainstream films to gain influence, subsequently utilizing that power to support his independent film endeavors. The 54-year-old actor’s focus on independent cinema became even more pronounced with the rise of streaming platforms.
The advent of OTT platforms marked a turning point in Bajpayee’s career, providing him with diverse and experimental roles. He credits OTT for empowering him and fellow actors, citing The Family Man as a game-changer in the OTT landscape. Bajpayee’s upcoming web series, “Killer Soup,” is poised to continue this trend.
Discussing his theatrical release, Joram, Bajpayee notes that the film’s subject might have suited a digital release, but the studio’s confidence in both the actor and the subject led to a theatrical premiere followed by an OTT release. This decision signifies the growing trust in Bajpayee and his ability to draw audiences across platforms.
Looking ahead, Bajpayee envisions a balanced career, seamlessly transitioning between OTT and theatrical releases. He maintains his unwavering focus on content quality, emphasizing that the box office numbers have never dictated his choices. His love for cinema, whether on OTT or in theaters, remains undeterred.
Manoj Bajpayee’s cinematic journey unfolds as a compelling narrative, showcasing his evolution from a niche actor to a versatile force shaping the landscape of Indian entertainment.