What I learnt from watching an actor at work.

Actors are the the role models of millions around the globe. The clothes they wear to the people they meet-everything does for a juicy gossip story for news channels and TV shows. I took an actor’s work real light until I saw one at work.

Last year, I was visiting Jammu and Kasmir with my family. We happened to be at a really small town called Patnitop. We visited a location to see snow (in summer). A few metres away from the snow-covered road, we saw a huge crowd. It was a small film crew with huge cameras and equipment in really big trucks. On enquiring, we found that a Punjabi movie was being filmed. Currently, they were shooting for a love-song.

I saw the hero and heroine (so called), rehearsing their dance moves. Let me remind you that it was freezing cold then (around 7-8 degrees celcius). Even four layers of sweaters and woollens didn’t seem to quite warm me up, and all that the actress was wearing was a thin lehenga choli made of some satin material. It was ridiculously cold and the choice of clothes for the actress-even more.

The director and choreographer kept instructing the actors. And there it was-the first take. A tiny part of the song played, perhaps just a tune, to which the actors danced (really well). Cut! It wasn’t good enough for the director. We saw as many as 7-8 takes for that tiny bit of a song. I guess something was missing even then. More and more takes. Perhaps their expressions and move were not up to the mark.

Did not they get bored it? How long was it going to take for just one small verse of a song? Is shooting for a film that hard? Yes.

We also saw the actress’ mother and sister supporting her throughout. Hats off to all the actors around the world who probably do such nearly impossible tasks almost everyday, with new backgrounds, climates and different types of people. No wonder they are paid so much. They deserve every penny of it. It was then that I realised how easy it is to relax behind a TV screen at the comfort of our homes and criticize these actors. It really is.

All the glitz and glamour is great, but an actor’s ACTING life is definitely not. I now have new found respect for every profession- specially acting.



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