Whenever a new show that offers something different in content value starts to air, we at Fuze get very excited about the same. This was the case for even Yeh Moh Moh Ke Dhaage, which aired on Sony TV. For a while, even we toyed with the idea of daily updates or at best weekly ones but unfortunately could never come around the same.
Nevertheless, it has been one of the finest shows to debut on Indian TV and from the date it went on air, we thought about fixing up an interaction with the lead actor Eijaz Khan.
However, destiny had different plans set for us. By the time, we got to the interview (not really his fault again) the show has been done and dusted but we did get into a conversation with the actor who needs no introduction.
Dressed in casuals, he seems to have lost almost all the weight that he had put on for his character of Mukhi (and I almost envy him for managing this all so soon) and is more than patronising to get into a meaningful conversation.
The conversation itself ranged across various topics, from Bigg Boss to how adorably cute his cat Billi is (yes Billi is indeed the name of the newest member in his family), from the traffic in the city to the prices of iPhone, from binge watching Narcos to will there ever be a second season of Yeh Moh Moh Ke Dhaage… You get the drift, that we managed to chat about almost every topic under the sun and Eijaz each time managed to effortlessly drift into any conversation. What’s more is that he always had an interesting take to offer on each of these things.
So by the time we were done, we were almost sorry to have run out of time but had it not been for that we could have perhaps gone on and on with the interview. Guess will have to catch up with him sometime soon for that (of course if he is up for it!)
Here are some interesting tit bits from the interview:
What was the best thing about playing Mukhi?
I don’t think you can put a finger on one specific thing. I think the characterisation of Mukhi is the way my producer perceived it [who by the way is also the writer of the show].
There was a time when I was talking to my director about Mukhi and he would tell me, nahi nahi Mukhi bahut acha insaan hai, this is how he will do this and I would say, Mukhi kuch aise karega, uski soch aisi hai. We actually ended up into making up Mukhi as a real life persona, which had a lot of integration with Eijaz Khan but he was a completely different person.
He was true, he was real especially in his words and his action and his integrity. I think that is the seed from which I would grow the character. A lot of hard work went into fleshing out the character. I don’t think of putting one particular element of playing him.
It is one of the nicest non grey characters that I have played and it has taken a lot of time for me to get out of it.
You have been associated with the industry for a long time. So over the years, how have things changed according to you?
This is such a loaded question. There are plenty of good things and bad as well but let’s just focus on the good things. There has been a lot of horizontal growth. There is a lot of work not necessarily good work (smiles), but yes lot of work.
It has embraced people from a lot of walks of life. Also I think there is work for everybody possible. Sometimes it is confusing what should a person like me do. For example, 70 per cent of my friends and colleagues were of the opinion that I should go for Bigg Boss, while the rest 30 per cent were like what are you doing? Do you know acting? Do you understand the craft? Then focus on the same rather than going on a reality show.
So there are people with different mindsets. Having said that, it is a very absorbing time for everyone associated with the industry. If you work hard, hone your talent, you can excel and live your dream.
Of all the characters that you have played which is the one character that is closest to your heart?
I think that the character closest to me was ACP Kabir, really close to me in real life. I wish to get to play one more character like this, not with so much darkness.
I think Kabir was a very real character. Of course, Kkavyanjali defined me. And the last show I did there was so much love.
I have said this in the earlier interviews also to date I have never got to relish a character with time, with a little love, with spending time off sets with the family and people because I have always played a character which is hatke or I did not have time at all to sit with them or eat with them.
But I got close to a few people here, which has never happened to me in my life ever. Even my producer Saba, she is so sweet. I have never had a regular family as I grew up without a mother but this show felt like family.
There have been rumours that there will be a second season of YMMKD. Is there any truth to the same?
No I had a word with Saba (the producer) just yesterday, don’t think there are any such plans.
You have mentioned in some of your earlier interviews that you are a huge Netflix fan. So which is your favourite series?
Also read somewhere that you love playing a character with shades or grey. Any particular character from an existing show that you might want to play?
Califorification. Hank Moody.
When one looks at your Twitter profile you come across as a very fun loving person but during interviews you seem to be more serious types, so which one is more you?
I think I touch the whole spectrum from time to time. I am a very idiotic funny person with my close friends but when I have to act like Eijaz Khan then I have to act like Eijaz Khan.
Had read somewhere that you were once going through a low phase in life, so any message would like to give to people who are currently in their low or dark phase?
See it (low/ dark phases) is not something that happens to us once or twice in life. It is a situation in our life and what choices we make while dealing with them. Sometimes it is beyond our control but most of the times what I have realised is with time, with a little bit of wisdom and maturity, there are means and ways of tricking our brain by staying surrounded by the horribly positive people. During these phases surround yourself with them.
My escape mechanism is to escape in work and make myself so busy and exhausted that I don’t have time to think of anything else.
My first message will be to get professional help if you can afford it. Also a big onus lies on our friends. I think when I was passing through the worst phase of my life I had this one person who stuck by me through thick and thin and because of that one person I came out, as that one person had faith in me.
So the onus lies on your best friends to realise those depression points to realise what is the right to make that stop and make that friend get professional help.
I think everyone goes through that shit, everyone has their own struggles. And to me my slip disk, C6 C7 might be a bigger problem to me than the hydrogen bomb in North Korea. So it is very individualistic, it is very relative.
The amount of sadness that you have and if you just read up or reach some other people who might be going through a different kind of scenario or a worse kind of scenario then you get the moral courage to pick your own a** and get out of that rut because you feel yours to be better than that.
I am choosing my words very carefully because I know there are few kids who will actually read this and they hold on to every word you say.
Any fun fact about you that people don’t know about you?
When I got asked again for Bigg Boss and while I was still contemplating on whether or not I should be a part of it, the only thought that was going through my mind was, that people on national television will get to know how loudly I snore and I might get kicked out of the house just for that. (Laughs)