For all those who are unaware of the name, 'Pankaj Tripathi', shouldn't be referred as a Bollywood-fan. A multifaceted actor who is known for giving impactful performances with utmost simplicity; Pankaj Tripathi has become an integral part of the Indian entertainment fraternity.
To save that Rs 500, my father and I (Pankaj Tripathi) would have dinner early and reach the farm by 8 pm. Every day we would sleep near the tubewell to save Rs. 500
After featuring in numerous blockbusters including Gangs of Wasseypur, Fukrey and Gurgaon among others; Pankaj has profoundly proved his mettle as an actor. But things were always not the same for Sacred Games actor. Hailing from a small village in Bihar, Pankaj was not blessed with a lot of amenities during the early stages of his life.
42-year-old Masaan actor had to go through a lot of struggle for securing a place in the entertainment industry. Today, we will reveal an insight to the inspirational life-story of Bollywood actor Pankaj Tripathi:
As mentioned above, Pankaj was born into a family of famers in a small village in Bihar. His father, Pandit Banaras Tripathi and mother Hemwanti Devi, used to work in agricultural field. And Pankaj also spent most of his teenage working alongside his farmer parents.
Talking about his struggle during the early-days, Tripathi once said: “I remember my father took a loan of Rs 5000 from a cooperative bank to buy a small five-horsepower tubewell pump. A certain part of it, which cost around Rs 500, was easily detachable. Thieves could steal it easily. To save that Rs 500, my father and I would have dinner early and reach the farm by 8 pm. Every day we would sleep near the tubewell to save Rs. 500.”
Tripathi always had love for acting in his heart. Sources reveal that Pankaj used to take part in village's Natak during annual festival celebration. But the credit for motivating the Sacred Games actor for moving to Mumbai goes to renowned actor Manoj Bajpayee. Actually, Manoj Bajpayee's hometown (Champaran) is just across the river from Pankaj's village. And the day Ram Gopal Verma's Satya released, everyone in the village was talking about then a rising star Manoj Bajpayee.
Tripathi felt that is someone from a neighbouring village can become an actor then he can also do it.
A very few people know that Pankaj was an active member of college politics. Our sources claim that Pankaj was a part of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad. And in 1993, Pankaj was also arrested for raising voice against the state government which was then ruled by Lalu Prasad Yadav.
Soon, Pankaj's dream of becoming a politician faded and he opted for drama.
Bihar Art Theater
After pursuing graduation, Pankaj joined Bihar Art Theater for 2 years and keenly observed the details of being an actor. Talking about that time, Pankaj said: “I took a 3 am train from my village to Patna every month. I used to bring rice, dal, and mustard oil from my village which I carried on my shoulder in a jute sack. Using these ingredients, I cooked and ate khichdi for the entire year.”
As we all know that National School of Drama, Delhi is one of the best institutes for acting in India. Therefore, Pankaj tried to get into it, not once or twice but thrice. Yes, you heard it right! Pankaj was rejected three times before entering into NSD.
Talking about NSD, Pankaj said: “I distinctly remember the rain falling on my tinned roof on a July noon. While I sat in my room, looking out of the window at the rain, a postman arrived in a raincoat. He came to me with a white envelope with the NSD logo. I realised that I had got through NSD this time. I started crying.”
Call from Mumbai!
After graduating from National School of Drama, Pankaj went back to Patna (Bihar) and started working in theatre for making some money. Meanwhile, he got married to a teacher Mridula and began his family unaware of what awaits for him.
During his stay at the NSD, Pankaj made many friends among which Bhanu Uday is a name that he will never forget. After receiving several calls from Uday who requested him for coming to Mumbai, Pankaj finally left for the city of dreams along with his wife, Mridula.
After working in numerous movies as a supporting actor including Apaharan (2005), Dharam (2007), Mithya (2008), Shaurya (2008) and Chintu Ji (2008) among others, Pankaj finally found his big-break in Bollywood, 'Gangs of Wasseypur'. He had to give an eight-hour-long audition for bagging the role of Sultan Qureshi in Anurag Kashyap's directorial
And since then Pankaj has not looked back. His utmost simplicity and sheer dedication towards acting has made Pankaj Tripathi, a rare and superior actor. On a related note, he has his kitty full with much-awaited projects including Drive, The Tashkent Files and Wife Not Wife among others.
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