IFFI 2023: Bollywood’s bad boys make a good impression

At the IFFI in-conversation session, the yesteryear villains say they are the reason heroes exist; leave a lasting impression
The iconic villains of Bollywood at IFFI 2023.
The iconic villains of Bollywood at IFFI 2023.Photo: Rohan Fernandes

Main hoon burayi ka farishta, mera janam aaj nahi hua, main toh hamesha se hi tha, aap ke pass, aap ke beech, aap ke andar....evil is created by good,” said the villain, literally sending chills down the spine of the audience. And guess what, it wasn’t on film, but he was standing there, in person. There wasn't one, but four of Bollywood’s bad boys who had come with their villainous persona but when they left, the audience were inspired.

On Day 8 of the 54th edition of IFFI, the Indian film industry’s iconic villains – Ranjeet, Gulshan Grover, Raza Murad and Kiran Kumar – graced the stage for an in-conversation session ‘The Villains, Leaving a Lasting Impression’ which was moderated by Komal Nahta.

The iconic villains of Bollywood at IFFI 2023.
IFFI 2023: Moving out of dad's shadow took long, says Michael Douglas

The actors, who’ve gone on to embrace the grey shade of human nature, have delivered such memorable performances that they’ve become synonymous with their characters. But unlike their screen persona, they appeared a lot more cheerful in person as they reminisced the old times and sent the crowd into laughter.

The actors took turns to describe what it meant to play negative characters on screen. Given the mischievous antics a villain like him got to enact, veteran actor Ranjeet was quick to say, “Some actors actually envied us for playing villains.”

The in-conversation session took place on Monday at Kala Academy.
The in-conversation session took place on Monday at Kala Academy.Photo: Rohan Fernandes

Renowned antagonist Raza Murad went on to say that no story has ever been complete without a villain. “They are the masala of the film,” and added that without that spice, the film would be pretty bland.

It’s almost a responsibility of the villains in India to make the hero appear like a superman and that’s important for the film to work too, said Tezaab actor Kiran Kumar. And agreeing with him, Gulshan Grover said, “It’s important to create an illusion that the person on the positive side who we call hero, deserves to win because we come from the land that stands by the philosophy Satyameva Jayate (truth alone triumphs).”

The iconic villains of Bollywood at IFFI 2023.
IFFI 2023: Rani Mukerji proves she is queen of hearts

Speaking about the ever-evolving nature of the roles of villains portrayed in cinema, the Bollywood baddies talked about how the villains of yore had particular attires which were meticulously created to aid the ‘bad look’. “The clothes enhanced our performances and also made the character memorable, but they are just accessories and ultimately it’s talent that counts,” Raza asserted.

Apart from talent, there was passion back in the day, simply witnessed in the stunning performances delivered by the actors despite being given dialogues just before camera began to roll. “I’m not saying we were better actors, but we were,” smiled Kiran, pointing out that currently the entire script is given well in advance for actors to prepare.

The actors shared some hilarious moments that sent the crowd into peals of laughter.
The actors shared some hilarious moments that sent the crowd into peals of laughter.Photo: Rohan Fernandes

Answering on the extensive use of swear words on OTT platforms, Ranjeet said, “I’ve played a very crude villain but I’ve never played a vulgar villain,” condemning the use of vulgar language and nudity shown on such platforms. Others felt that cinema or OTT simply reflects society and the changing times, adding that one must be careful and use them to enhance the story and not because it sells.

The khalnayaks (villains) went on to admit that films provided an outlet for negativity that can’t be expressed in real life. “Humne to behmani ka kaam (negative roles) bhi imandari se kiya”, thereby reinstating with their acting abilities that it took a villain to show how great the hero is.

The iconic villains of Bollywood at IFFI 2023.
IFFI 2023: Vijay Sethupathi says he is not a method actor

What also became the highlight of the conversation was the actors’ deep voices and diction that had compliments pouring in during the audience question round.

“Have something unique about you, even if it seems like an imperfection,” they advised, as each one went on to deliver their favorite dialogue. This had the entire crowd remove their phones and capture the moment after all the villains had done it again, leaving a lasting impression once more.

Your Gateway to Goa, India

The Gomantak Times app is the best way to stay informed on anything happening in Goa. From breaking news to the top 10 restaurants to visit, GT helps you navigate your time in Goa.

Download the Gomantak Times app on your Android or IOS device.

Related Stories

No stories found.
Goa News in English on Gomantak Times