In Anand Gandhi‘s new futuristic DisneyPlus Hotstar series OK Computer, Jackie Shroff plays Pushpak Shakur, an environmentalist with a penchant for staying in the buff. He talks about balancing his love of nature with his need to be tech savvy and why his character doesn’t wear clothes:
“I am kind of techno, right from the time my son, Tiger (Shroff), was small. Way back in 1993, I would video call him. When he was small, my wife would show him the screen and say: This is your papa. I was shooting for 2-3 films at a time and would travel a lot so I wanted to see him. I would use a Sony camera and dial-up internet, and all of that was the norm. Later on, I created a website. I was very into technology.
Later in life, my friend Danny (Denzongpa) and I would walk around the forest and every bit of green looked the same to me. But each had something to say, which I only started learning from Danny. Like some plants were avocado, some were paan, some were medicinal. And so when I was telling my wife about the show, I said this character should be dressed in nice leaves and flowers, like he should make them into nice outfits and wear them. But then it was decided that I should go full Monty and I went for it.
It’s good to be close to nature, but one cannot do without technology. My character is into greenery, but without technology, I wouldn’t be able to talk to you and I wouldn’t have been able to see my son back in 1993. So I’m tech savvy but also concerned about my environment. I want to be with nature as much as I can and grow a whole lot of vegetables and plants. It’s a balance.”