Vicky Kaushal on playing Sardar Udham: I related to his angst

PTI, Sep 30, 2021, 5:30 PM IST

Mumbai: Actor Vicky Kaushal on Thursday said playing the titular role in “Sardar Udham” was a tough nut to crack but growing up listening to the stories about the patriot he felt a deep connection with his on-screen character.
Helmed by Shoojit Sircar, the upcoming film is a biopic on the lesser-known story of freedom fighter Sardar Udham Singh, who assassinated Michael O”Dwyer, the former Lieutenant Governor of Punjab in British India in 1940, to avenge the 1919 Jallianwala Bagh massacre.

During the trailer launch of the film, Kaushal said Sardar Udham Singh was one of those freedom fighters of the country who got lost in the history books.

“When you go back to our history books, they get lost in a line, paragraph or a page in the book. Sardar Udham Singh was probably that one line, paragraph or a page in the book.

“But because I had heard his stories from my grandparents and parents, there was always this connect straight from my core where I related to that man. I related to his angst,” Kaushal told reporters here.

The “Uri” star said the Jallianwala Bagh massacre was a shocking episode which “hit home in the most brutal way”.

Calling “Sardar Udham” a story of courage, Kaushal said he wanted to challenge himself with this role.

“A person who had taken a note to avenge that bloodshed, not in India but by crossing borders 100 years ago, went to the heart of the British empire… For me it is a story of resilience, bravery, patience and a passionate person.

“Through this film I wanted to explore that factor in me also. It”s not the most easy role to touch. It”s also a character that isn’t widely documented in our history books,” the 33-year-old actor said.

Written by Ritesh Shah and Shubhendu Bhattacharya, the film is scheduled to be released on Amazon Prime Video on October 16.

Kaushal said there was such dearth of published material on the freedom fighter that his only approach to build the character was to rely completely on Sircar.

The actor said if one attempts to read books on Sardar Udham Singh, they would find “different stories about the same person”.

“You’ll find different names, identities and faces. How do you tap into what was the core of the person? The only way to play this part was to completely surrender to Shoojit’s vision.

“The more I heard him, I realised that the way he understands that era, the way he studied the freedom struggle, Sardar Udham Singh, Shaheed Bhagat Singh… I’ve never met anyone like him,” he added.

Produced by Ronnie Lahiri and Sheel Kumar, the film also stars Banita Sandhu and Amol Parashar.

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