Anupam Kher, at 58 years, is at the prime of his youth. “It’s not even the interval!” he insists, laughing. Retirement? We tentatively ask. “Luckily, I’m an actor. I will never retire. It has never crossed my mind either. I’m a workaholic,” he says.
The man has had a fantastic 2013, which included starring in the Oscar nominated Silver Linings Playbook and has eight releases lined up this year – including the two releasing on March 7, Ek Teri and Total Siyapa.
This is not including the two new films that he’s signed recently – Soorat Barjatiya’s Bade Bhaiya and Rohit Shetty’s Singam 2. And there are more on the Hollywood counter as well. “I’ve given a few auditions and if things work out, I’ll be happy to be part of them,” he confides.
Phew. He is one busy man. In between his acting career and his teaching school, the actor still found time to come down for The New Indian Express’ ThinkEdu Conclave 2014 where he spoke on the topic of skills and education – a topic close to his heart.
“Personally, I’ve always believed that skills are part of education and in my profession, skills are much more important. It is important to do sessions like these, to expand your horizons and not remain an actor. Acting is part of my life, not my life,” says Kher.
And he has expanded his horizons. His acting school, which Kher started in 2005 is going so strong that the actor says he identifies himself as a teacher too. “I’m primarily a teacher now. I act also sometimes,” he says laughing.
“The best part about teaching is that you get to learn a lot. It is the best form of learning, I believe, especially in my field where there is no syllabus. Acting has no syllabus. You can be 90 and still have thousands of facets of emotions that you can still portray,” he says.
In addition, the veteran actor is also busy with his motivational talks that he gives and his play, Kuch Bhi Ho Sakta Hai, which he is performing in Kolkata on February 2.
And when we ask him about his’me’ time in between all of this madness, he simply shrugs. “Whenever I’m working, I’m with myself. Working time is my ‘me’ time. I’m doing what I wanted to do all my life. How many people get to do that?,” he says candidly. “My grandfather used to say, a busy man has time for everything. It’s when you want to do something you manage, somehow or other,” he adds proudly.
With so much on his plate, and so much already accomplished, we ask him if he has a ‘dream role’ that he wants to do. True to his nature, he earnestly replies, “Ask me after 30 years, I’ll tell you!”