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Adil Hussain was surprised to be cast as lead in 'Zed Plus'

PTI 25 Nov 2014, 16:36:47 PM IST

New Delhi: Actor Adil Hussain says even though he has played the main hero in several regional and international projects, he was surprised when Chandra Prakash Dwivedi approached him to play the lead in his upcoming Bollywood film ‘Zed Plus'.

The 51-year-old actor said he asked the filmmaker several times if he was sure about casting him as the face of the movie as he does not have much market value.  “When I was approached for the lead role, I was surprised as I don't have a market value. I do have a very strong following but very few. I was not confident and I asked Dwivedi ji, ‘Are you sure you want to take me in the film?' He said the story is very interesting and we will find a way to sell it.
“He asked me not to worry about it and that is when I felt confident and told him that as long as you want me, I would love to do it,” Adil told PTI.

However, the actor from Assam, who has starred in films like ‘Ishqiya', ‘English Vinglish', ‘Life of Pi' and ‘Lootera' among others, said he is not trying to make any statement to other directors by doing a lead role.

“This is my first lead role in a Bollywood film. But I have done so many films as a lead which run in theatres in Europe and also in India but without any fanfare in terms of its release. My job is to act and the job of a filmmaker is to find actors who they think are competent for a genre. I don't have to prove anything. I think the film will prove something if it does well at the box office,” he said.

‘Zed Plus' is a political satire and will mark the return of Dwivedi as a director after his last film ‘Pinjar' in 2003.  Adil said one of the main reasons he agreed to do the film was because he felt the script was very sensible, which is a rare thing in Bollywood.

“Very rarely one comes across a script which is sensible in India. And even if there are few sensible films being made, they do not necessarily have characters in my age category.  “The film is about a political situation. I represent the social class which is most neglected in the name of development, a class which constitutes 70 per cent of our poplulation... all the thelawalas, rickshaw walas, labourers, farmers,” Adil said.

‘Zed Plus' also stars TV actress Mona Singh, Mukesh Tiwari, Sanjay Mishra, Kulbhushan Kharbanda among others. The film is set to hit theatres on November 28.  This year, Adil also starred in two commercial Bollywood films- Subhash Ghai's ‘Kaanchi' and ‘The Xpose'. In both the films the actor had very small roles.

When asked why he decided to do these films, which are so different from the genre of movies with which he is associated with, Adil said, “I feel I have chosen acting as my muse. I am supposed to act. I do have an integrity about which role I should play and which not. But I am not a fanatic judgemental actor... that closes me. I will do such films as long as I am comfortable.”
The actor will take a break next month after the release of ‘Zed Plus' and travel to Hampi for a small theatre festival which he is organising.

Adil is looking forward to 2015 as several of his films will hit the theatres including ‘Tigers', ‘Main Aur Charles', ‘Blemmished Light', ‘Feast of Varanasi', ‘Amrica' among others.