Actor Dulquer Salmaan has starred in more than 20 films across languages. However, Salmaan admits that the failure of Bejoy Nambiar’s Solo, which released in October last year, hurt him most. So much so that the actor even took to social media to address the negative publicity and brickbats the film was facing at the time. “People tell me Solo isn’t like Charlie and Bangalore Days. They asked me why I did it. They say I could have avoided it. They say this kind of experimenting is unnecessary. But you know what, that’s why I love it. I want to constantly do ‘different’ films,” Salmaan wrote in a Facebook post.
In an interview with FC Editor Anupama Chopra, he explains why he thinks the film wasn’t given a fair chance. “I worked really hard on that film and I genuinely believed in it. That’s okay because all of us actors work hard on our films. They work, don’t work – it’s not in our control. In the case of Solo, I felt like it just made them (the audiences) awkward.”
The actor feels the revelation in the film made people too uncomfortable, saying, “A section of the audience then went on to boo it in such a manner or to make it uncomfortable for the other viewers – people who were okay with it. And then it shouldn’t become that it’s uncool to go and watch this film. And that’s kind of what happened. And now that it’s out on social media, they’re raving about it or they’re saying ‘Actually, there’s nothing wrong about it,’ or ‘What’s wrong with the idea?’
“The thing is, the courage that I’ve got from the audience is always that if I attempt genuine cinema, that it will work out – they will appreciate it. And I felt like on the first day, this was being killed and it wasn’t being given a chance. And that kind of hurt me. It wasn’t about the production or the effort we put into it. It was just..you didn’t give it a fair chance. I don’t care if you don’t like it – that’s fine. Give it a chance. I felt like it didn’t even get to breathe.”
Responding to the question on whether the instance has made him afraid of taking chances again, he said, “Fortunately, I think what works in our favour is the number of films we do. I do three to five a year. I feel like because of the volume of the films, if this doesn’t work, I have other films. I keep thinking it will work out. Law of averages. I do want to still take risks, I don’t want to play it safe. If it doesn’t scare me, then I start worrying.”