Home / Bollywood / Sushant Singh Rajput’s Sonchiriya director Abhishek Chaubey recalls last conversation, says actor felt the effect of nepotism
Sonchiriya director Abhishek Chaubey has written a piece in remembrance of actor Sushant Singh Rajput, who died by suicide on Sunday, at the age of 34. “His death was a bolt from the blue. I just don’t understand it. I can’t process it,” Chaubey wrote for the Indian Express.
Writing that Sushant felt the effect of nepotism in the film industry, Abhishek wrote, “I always thought he was one of those guys who would not take things seriously. I know there are things being said, but I don’t buy it entirely that the industry treated him badly and he felt bad about it. Sushant was beyond all that. I felt he was comfortable in his own skin. He didn’t care what you thought about him. Nepotism in this industry affects actors much more than directors. He felt that. But it is one thing to say that it exists but how much does it affect you personally?”
Also read: Sushant Singh Rajput’s Sonchiriya co-star Ranvir Shorey blasts Bollywood hypocrisy, recalls story from awards show
Abhishek remembered the first time that he met Sushant was when they were casting Sonchiriya. “He was shooting for a film and staying in a hotel in Powai,” the director wrote. “This was Holi of 2017. So, he asked if I would be okay to meet him on Holi, and I replied, ‘Absolutely.’ I thought I would give him a broad idea to get a sense whether he would be interested in doing a film of this sort. I ended up sitting with him for two to three hours, talking about the film mainly, but also all sorts of things. He immediately asked for the script. I hadn’t even carried it, thinking he would take his time to decide. I sent across the script to him, and that very night, he read it and wanted to do it.”
On set, Abhishek said that Sushant brought his telescope with him to Rajasthan, and would discuss “science, the universe, astronomy, philosophy.”
“He was a geek, a science geek, and he knew his thing. He could make you understand really hard concepts. It was not an image he was trying to cultivate. He was naturally that person. He was really setting a bar,”
Abhishek recalled speaking with Sushant in April. “It was just a casual conversation about COVID and lockdown,” he said. “I don’t think I will be watching Sonchiriya now. It will be too much for me. That moment in the film where Lakhna has a vision of his alternate life, has taken a completely different meaning in my head. It will be too emotional. It has taken a life of its own.”
Also read: Manoj Bajpayee says Sushant Singh Rajput touched his feet on first day of Sonchiriya shoot: ‘My mind is not leaving the image’
Previously, Sushant’s co-stars in Sonchiriya -- Manoj Bajpayee, Ranvir Shorey and Bhumi Pednekar -- had all spoken about his tragic death. In an Instagram live with Shekhar Kapur, Manoj said that Sushant touched his feet on the first day of shoot. “My mind is not leaving the image of him on the first day, coming to me and suddenly touching my feet. All the perceptions that people were floating about him, that one gesture of his just questioned everything. Not that he touched my feet...it just says so many things about his background, where he came from,” he said.
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