I came up with about twenty different names for this blog but "Robert is Yavraaj" seemed to tell all...Yavraaj (the prince) is the name of the film I worked on the past five days and Robert was my character...it was a jammed pack week beyond belief..
First the bad news...I didn't get the reality show...I know, I know...I sooo wanted to be on it...what to do!
Back in Mumbai on Monday I got a call to go on a four day (turned into five) shoot at Flimistan studios which is really close to home so I was thrilled. I get there and the first person I see in one of my most hated frienimeis Vasily, he's an insane homeless Russian that gets jobs (somehow) and is a total freak. I have him in my phone book as VaCrazy. Sometimes his whole "insanity thing" is fun, most it's torturous. This is a typical Vasily conversation.
v: why do you live here
c: I love mumbai
v: I think thailand is better
c: than go live there
v: I think you will like thailand better
c: I have been
v: why don't you live in thailand do hate thai people
c: no I just...
v: why do you hate thai people you should live in thailand is much more green you should live in thailand, why don't you live in thailand
(craig slits his wrist - end scene)
So anyway Vasily and I find our studio and it turns out to be beautiful. The most amazing set I have worked on. I could tell straight away there was money behind this movie, which means, to me, that despite Vacrazy, it would be a good five days.
Now days later I forget all the details of the first day...I played the butler of one of the main characters whose house the set was. Whenever he had any scenes I sort had to be standing or milling in the background. normal bolly fare. My characters name was Robert; it became the name that the crew just started calling me on and off camera. It became hard to tell where Robert ended and Craig began...maybe Vasily wasn't the only crazy on set!
The director is Subhash Ghai. He started a film school here in Mumbai called "Whistling Woods International Institute for Film, Television and Media Arts". It is basically THE film school of India. It produces smart, smart graduates! His production company, which Yavraaj is part of, is called Mukta Arts.
There were three white extras...me, vacrazy and a German girl named Angela. It was my first time meeting her and she instantly became my new best friend. She is living here in Mumbai and has had many of the same experiences that I have, it was nice to talk to someone "living my life". She found Vasily crazy as well, so I had to love her.
The star of the film is Salmon Khan. Salmon is really, really famous. In 1994 he stared in "Hum Aapke Hain Koun" it was the first Bollywood film I ever saw. it came about as I was just starting to be "india crazy" adding fuel to the fire. it is a perfect film. It was really really special to know that now I would "be" in a film with Salmon...it was truly one of those "life is great" moments. tear!
The first day Salmon was not going to be there and I was sad...then...all of the sudden...out of know where Hrithik Roshan showed up. Who? Right! Hrithik is a big time actor here blah, blah, blah. Where my obsession with him lies, is in his hands...his right hand...it has two thumbs! a regular one and then a little baby one on top of that...it's so gross, I love it...every time I see his picture its like all I can see is those thumbs...so to see them, both of them, was the highlight of day one.
Because the director of the film is a big deal the entire week was a cavalcade of Bollywoods finest just stopping by the set to say hi...Sanjay Dutt, Ranbar Kapoor, Arshad Warsi, Irfaan Khan, just to name a few...I know those names mean nothing to most of you but in this new life I am living they are important so seeing them was fun.
The production crew: if you work on a production more than one day you are bound to meet one, two at the most, crews members that are awesome you can really "bond" with. This production had about 40. I have never been around such a friendly, warm, and FUN bunch of people. Even thought I was excited to see all the stars...the crew became...I kinda want to say "family"...but that sounds cheesy...but it totally fits. I miss them already.
So I just got a call to go audition at Shah Rukh Khan office...(YES!) so I gots to go I’ll fill in the rest later…you don’t keep King Khan waiting.