Actor Manu Rishi Chadha talks about playing a fictionalised version of the viral dancing uncle Sanjeev Shrivastava in a recently-released short film.
Social media has allowed several talents to have their 15 minutes of fame over the years. Three years ago, a viral video from a sangeet of a small wedding in Madhya Pradesh gave rise to one such overnight star – the dancing uncle. Sanjeev Shrivastava, a professor, became famous when a video of him dancing to Govinda’s Aapke Aa Jane Se, went viral. A new short film titled Aapke Aa Jane Se, has recreated a fictionalised account of the incident, showing the life-changing power of social media.
Actor Manu Rishi Chadha, known for his performance in films like Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhaan and Hum Do Hamare Do, essays the lead role of the dancing uncle in the film. Speaking to us about the film and his role, the actor says, “I was excited to be a part of this film as it tells the story of an ordinary man with an extraordinary story. It feels like I have portrayed a part of myself through this character. I like playing these characters that are relatable and real. In this case, it is inspired from a real person and incident, so it was even more challenging.”
Manu admits he did not meet the real dancing uncle Sanjeev- the inspiration behind his character. “It is as much his story as it the story of any common Indian man thrust into sudden limelight. We have fictionalised it taking inspiration from what happened with him. But it takes liberties. So, I did not meet him for preparation. But I am sure that I may end up meeting him sooner or later. He is a celebrity in his own right today,” he tells us. But he says it wasn’t difficult getting into the skin of the character. He elaborates, “I could relate to him a bit. Though I am not as technologically challenged as he is, but there were parts of the character that were very familiar to me.”