I was conflicted about fame: Abhay Deol

Vastavam web: Abhay Deol was determined to create his own identity when he made his debut over a decade ago but coming from a film family, the actor says he was conflicted about fame.Abhay says people initially expected him to follow in on the footsteps of his uncle Dharmendra and cousin Sunny Deol but he chose alternative cinema over commercial projects to assert his individuality.”I wasn’t looking to be a star, I just happened to love acting, I was a reluctant actor. So I was like how do I manage this without taking in the frenzy of becoming a star,” Abhay told in an interview.

Abhay, who made his debut with Imtiaz Ali’s “Socha Na Tha”, says he remained doubtful about fame even when it came knocking at his door.”Somewhere it is negative because I should have been around to promote my film and myself. I didn’t do that. But do I regret it? No. Because it kept me grounded. Maybe I didn’t take the advantage and become a star and get all the brands so that I could solidify my space in the world,” he says.The actor played a messed up man who gets a second chance at both love and life in the film, a modern take on “Devdas”. Looking back, Abhay believes he should have approached the film’s success in a more balanced way.

“The reaction to ‘Dev D’ success wasn’t a balanced one from my end. I ran away! I should have stayed around and seen how I could balance things. But I wasn’t capable of that. That’s my background,” he says.”For the first film, putting the name (Deol) behind me is understandable but as time progressed, people started to accept (me), in fact, they liked that I was my own individual.

“But the industry could not put money behind it (my individuality) because they can put money behind a brand, which is what my family name is, but they couldn’t do with the individual that I was. It didn’t make any monetary sense to them,” he says.He went on to star in critically-acclaimed films such as “Manorama Six Feet Under”, “Oye Lucky Lucky Oye” and “Shanghai”.Abhay further cemented his career by venturing out in commercial movies such as “Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara” and “Happy Bhaag Jayegi”.