TORONTO, ONTARIO – SEPTEMBER 14: Kapil Sharma attends the “Zwigato” Premiere during the 2022 Toronto International Film Festival at TIFF Bell Lightbox on September 14, 2022 in Toronto, Ontario. (Photo by Robert Okine/Getty Images)
Comedian-actor Kapil Sharma on Wednesday said his portrayal of a food delivery person in the upcoming drama feature Zwigato will not disappoint fans who are familiar with his repartee and observational humour as a stand-up artist.
Through Nandita Das’ Zwigato, Sharma said he wants to present aspects of his personality other than funny bones.
“I do comedy 2 hours a day on my show, but I’m not like that for 24 hours. There are several facets to my personality, that I’d like to show. I don’t think there will be any disappointment among fans as they’ll also be keen to see what new I’m bringing to the table,” the actor told reporters in Mumbai.
He was speaking at the trailer launch of Zwigato, produced by Sameer Nair of Applause Entertainment and Nandita Das Initiatives.
Recalling an incident during the film’s Asian premiere at the 27th Busan International Film Festival last year, Sharma said Zwigato struck a chord with the audience in South Korea.
“After watching the film, people were crying there, and they didn’t even know that I’m known for comedy. So, I don’t think there’ll be any disappointment,” he added.
Also starring Shahana Goswami, the movie is set in Bhubaneswar and follows the journey of a food delivery person exploring the world of the gig economy.
The actor, whose film credits include Kis Kisko Pyaar Karoon and Firangi, said he never thought he would be part of Das’ movie.
“I’ve always loved her work. I’ve watched both Firaaq and Manto. She makes very serious, thoughtful films. So, I never thought I’d be a part of her film. A big thank you to her and Sameer sir for considering me and believing I could be a part of such a subject. In India, we sometimes forget to focus on everyday people and their stories. So many beautiful stories are out there, we need to tell them more,” he added.
Sharma said he resonated with the story of Zwigato due to his past experience. “I used to work at Coca-Cola. We all do small jobs here and there when we first come to Mumbai. The product was transported in trucks. There were no apps back then. But, when Nandita ma’am came to me and told me what all difficulties delivery guys face, I could relate to that story a lot.”
The actor said he was curious why Das wanted to make the film with him.
“I asked her, ‘Why me?’ I didn’t know whether to take her answer as a compliment or an insult. She replied, ‘Even if global star Shah Rukh Khan would have agreed to do the film, I’d have not taken him, but chosen you because you have such a common face, it can fit anywhere in a crowd’,” he added.
Das revealed that Zwigato was initially conceived during the COVID-19 pandemic as part of a four-director anthology.
“However, one by one, other directors backed out as they got occupied with bigger films. Then, Sameer Nair advised me to stretch this story to a feature film. I was reluctant, but then he kept egging me on. Slowly the story expanded, the characters became bigger, the roles of the kids grew, and it became a complete film,” she said.
Collaborating with Sharma may appear like joining “two opposite ends of the spectrum”, but Das said they have a lot in common.
“Today, we connect over so many things, over the same jokes. We can even talk with each other late into the night and never get bored,” she said.
Zwigato also stars Goswami as a homemaker, who decides to support her husband’s (Sharma) income by taking up a job for the very first time.
“My character has her own journey and it’s closely linked to his journey. What I liked the most is that we are truly partners in the film. We share everything, we do things together. It’s a beautiful partnership,” she said.
Producer Nair termed Zwigato a “mainstream film”. “This isn’t a niche or art film or something presented in a very heavy manner. It’s a mainstream film, which will appeal to everyone,” he added.