Bollywood actor Vivek Oberoi made his acting debut with the Ram Gopal Verma directorial, Company, opposite Ajay Devgn. It has been 19 years since then, and the actor is all gearing up for another powerful grey character, Vikrant Dhawan, in the third season of Inside Edge. After the gangster space, Vivek played the boy next door in the same year in Saathiya, and soon after the release of that film, the media compared him to the king of romance, Shah Rukh Khan. Did the comparisons put undue pressure on him?
Vivek answers, “I grew up watching Shah Rukh and was a huge fan. These are the things that happen, and you don’t take them seriously. You need to focus on your roles, and build your own brand rather than being compared and labelled. Shah Rukh was already half way a legend in 2002, already a great. He is the greatest success story of all time in Hindi cinema. You can’t compare.” After a series of films in Hindi, the actor transitioned to the South Indian industry exploring Telugu, Tamil and Kannada.
One of his biggest South Indian releases is the Tamil film, Vivegam, which pitted him against one of the biggest Tamil stars, Ajith, popularly known as Thala Ajith by his fans. Ask him about the experience of interaction with Thala fans, and he said, “We referred to each other as Nanba in the film, which is the Tamil equivalent of Mere Bhai, Mere Dost. Somewhere, we connected in real life too. Ajith Anna and I became damn close and that started reflecting on and off screen. It was an amazing experience to see that kind of madness. There are very few people who have a cult around them, like Rajini Sir, and I think Ajith Anna is one of them.”
Ajith Anna is a cult like Rajini sir… He is an all-rounder, a phenomenal biker and nicest guy of film industry
When asked if he is in touch with Thala and if another collaboration is on cards and he signed off, “We had lots of chat before. He is a lovely guy, almost like an elder brother. He is a phenomenal biker, so we do speak about things in common like that. He is an all-rounder, one of the nicest guys I know in the Indian film industry. Even his wife, Shalini is a brilliant person. It’s a lovely family. We have discussed some stuff for (a film), but over there, when it matures, it matures.”