Edited excerpts from the interview:
Anupama Chopra: It's interesting to me that in your 25th year, you have a film like Class Of 83, in which we see you in a role that we haven't often seen you in – this hardened cop. Did you enjoy being Dean Vijay Singh?
Bobby Deol – Yes, I definitely did. I was always trying to look for characters to play like the one in this film. Because, once you have an image, it's not easy to get an opportunity to play these kind of roles. They are always given to these serious actors, who usually always end up getting these kind of roles. My career has moved from a bad phase to again a decent phase, and now I think it's a great phase for me. Things are looking nice. I was always looking forward to working on an OTT platform and I've been watching a lot of stuff on Netflix. OTT platforms all have very interesting stuff. You come up across movies which have such simple narratives. You get engrossed with the story-telling and the simplicity…. I read the script of Class of 83 and I was so happy that I was getting a script like this. I did workshops with my co-actors and I really enjoyed this new approach to cinema. I was sitting with these 5 guys, young talented boys from theatre and I was nervous as hell.
Anupama Chopra: Bobby, I don't think any interview these days is complete without a conversation about nepotism. I remember about 2 years ago when you and I did an interview you said you didn't fully understand it. Do you have a larger sense of it now and do you worry about your sons?
Bobby Deol: I am not concerned for the simple fact that when someone chooses a profession, no matter how much help you get or don't get, it's your talent that speaks for you end of the day. There are lot of people who want to be in this profession and there's a lot of struggle. I mean, I'm from the industry and I also have to struggle… I also have to go and knock on everybody's door's for work. It has never been easy for me. So I think it's a misconception to a certain level and at a certain level it could be right. But I think that the more you're making it sound right, the more you're giving up on yourself. I think you have it in your hands to never give up, be persistent, and believe in yourself. Not everybody is lucky, not everybody becomes a superstar. If that was the case, then only star kids would be superstars. Eventually you have to work hard and do your best as an actor and that's what I think all the kids who are coming up should realize. My father ran away from the village to become an actor. He was a nobody. So he gave me this life, but he didn't make me an actor who survived 25 years. That was on my work that spoke for me. I did go through to 3 – 4 years of no work, but that was my own doing, because I went off-track.
I think I've proved that I am back as an honest person who wants to work as an actor and that's the only goal I have in my life. I think, in a way, I am more ambitious now, than I've ever been.