Saqib Ayub: I want to explore diverse roles

Actor Saqib Ayub of Farzi, She, and Brahmastra fame will now be seen in Love Adhura, currently streaming on Amazon Mini TV, essaying the role of an antagonist opposite Karan Kundra and Erica Fernandes. In Love Adhura, the ace actor takes on the role of a complex character, a crazed psychopath who thrives on chaos and destruction. Tasked with executing the dark deeds of those who hire him for monetary gain, Saqib’s current character, Prakash, embodies a blend of loudness, sleaze, and an insatiable appetite for conflict and pain. In fact, a little birdie tells us that the show’s director, Tanveer Bookwala, who gave the actor complete freedom to play around with his character, would often proclaim on the set that Saqib’s got his inner ‘Joker’ out, and particularly in his scenes with another female assassin.

Reflecting on his experience of shooting for Love Adhura in Munnar, Saqib says it had its own advantages and challenges too. “Unfavourable weather and fluctuating network played the biggest spoil sports. We would have perfect natural lighting and then suddenly a massive cloud cover or rain would ruin our plans! The hotel we were at had almost no network and bad internet. But the cast and crew members bonded really well because of that, and I’m certain that this camaraderie will be evident in the show. Despite the challenges, we managed to pull off a fantastic job! We found joy in simple pleasures like playing Uno and indulging in the delicious passion fruits of Munnar. Erica generously provided kilos of it for everyone, and soon we were all hooked.”

Having worked with Imtiaz Ali, Raj & DK, Ayan Mukerji and other brilliant filmmakers, as an actor, Saqib prefers to embrace the director’s vision of his character at hand. With regards to the much-needed transition from playing dark characters to returning to himself, he quips, “Coming out of a character isn’t really a big deal, actually. I’m back to being Saqib as soon as the director announces ‘pack up!’ It all comes down to mental compartmentalisation, which I believe is an indispensable skill and asset for any actor in reel life, as well as for any individual in real life.”

Despite his extensive experience portraying negative roles, the actor is determined not to be typecast. Reflecting on his desire to break away from the gangster image established by projects like Farzi and Bambai Meri Jaan, he shares, “Both characters are close to my heart. But I want to explore diverse roles – that of a small-town guy from UP, or a student activist fighting for the rights of tribals, a quintessential Bollywood lover boy, a helpless man in a tragedy, an out and out goofball in a comedy, a boxer, an athlete, a footballer, an underdog, and the list goes on! And, more than anything, I would like to play characters that are prevalent in our society but are rarely spoken about.”

The actor who is steadily climbing the ladder of success, has at least three more projects in the pipeline after Love Ahdura – two with Applause Entertainment, and one with Excel Entertainment. Notably, the latter will be Saqib’s second project with Excel Entertainment following the success of Bambai Meri Jaan.

Entertainment Desk
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