Note: The views expressed in this article do not reflect the views of BollySpice.com’s staff or owners. They are solely the views of the writer of this opinion piece.
‘Who is your favourite actor?’ is a question I am asked innumerable times. I turn around and reply with a big smile on my face, ‘Vivek Oberoi!’ Some people are amused, some are shocked, some agree and some don’t, but that’s a different story. Not like it matters to me, right?
Vivek’s been a favourite of mine since September 2002 to be exact. I still remember watching him on ‘Jeena Isi ka Naam hai’ when his father, Suresh Oberoi, was the host of the show. I completely fell head over heels in love with Vivek ‘the person’ that day! He seemed so down to earth, kind and humble. Someone you can relate to. I mean, I had heard of him being a great actor, (Mind you, I hadn’t watched Company nor Road which were his only two releases at that time) and being touted as the most promising newcomer after a long span of time. I wasn’t bothered at all though. Then, as I was channel surfing that night, I came across him on the show, and the rest as they say, is history.
Saathiya was the first film I watched of his and that’s when I started loving Vivek ‘the actor’. I thought he was brilliant for a newcomer. Obviously, after that I ended up watching Company and Road (He was amazing) and his subsequent films as well. Some good, some bad, but enough has been written about that by the media.
Now as we all know, Vivek hasn’t exactly had a huge hit since Saathiya and has become the media’s favourite whipping boy. In the beginning, it was very irritating… all the negative publicity and opinions. Now, it doesn’t bother me in the least bit. Everyone is entitled to an opinion. I do, however, feel that a large section of the press has been unfair to him in writing him off. Sure, Vivek hasn’t done the best movies, he’s made some pretty bad choices, he’s gone through a very low phase in his career, but doesn’t everyone go through it at some point of time? Every actor goes through ups and downs; it’s just part of the game. Hrithik Roshan went through it, Abhishek Bachchan has been through it, and even the powerful Khan’s have been through it! Compared to them, Vivek is still a newbie. However, as I always say, what doesn’t break you only makes you stronger and I’m sure in some way or the other, every unfavourable article, and every inch of criticism he’s got has made Vivek stronger and work that much harder.
It’s very easy to go around bashing an actor when they’re on a low, but let me tell you its not easy out there, its a tough life…they go out and work really hard on a film, they put their blood and sweat into it and then the film is judged by this party of people who have nothing to do with the film emotionally. It’s the common man who judges it…he either likes the movie or he doesn’t. It’s fair and every actor, including Vivek, is forced to accept it whether they like it or not. People do tend to forget that actors are human beings too, they also have emotions, they might not be able to show it but that’s just the way it is…just because they don’t show it doesn’t mean they don’t have feelings, it doesn’t mean you go ahead and rip him apart. What has Vivek done to the media personally? I think it’s completely unfair and very wrong to bash him and take potshots at him time and again! Give him a break for heaven sake! Vivek’s certainly one of the most gifted actors out there, he’s a powerhouse of talent; he’s proved it before and will continue to do so!
Now that I’ve vented, lets get back to why I love (no wait, ADORE) Vivek! Yes, I adore him as an actor and I really admire the fact that he didn’t debut as the typical ‘chocolate boy’ hero, dancing and running around trees. He dared to do something different by playing the role of a gangster, Chandrakant Nagre (better known as Chandu) in Company. And that is exactly what makes Vivek Oberoi unique and special. He is a man who will stand by his convictions and do what he strongly believes in, and he believed in Chandu’s character. Company fetched him several ‘Most Promising Newcomer’ and ‘Best Supporting Actor’ awards too. Truly well deserved I must say!
I love his work, be it in Company, Saathiya, Yuva, Home Delivery, Omkara…he shows his versatility with each character he plays and I don’t think many actors out there have the kind of range that he does. That doesn’t mean I haven’t disliked him in some films like Kyun! Ho Gaya Na and Pyare Mohan, but since this article is about why I love Vivek, I’d rather stick to loving him!
Another reason why I look up to him is because of the charity work he does. Oh yeah, he has been criticized and called publicity-hungry even for a noble cause like this but it won’t stop him, he won’t go by what others do or say. Honestly speaking, how many celebrities have the courage go to a tsunami-hit village and help out the people there? It’s a little something called hope, and apart from helping the perished people resume their daily lifestyle by providing them with bare necessities, Vivek gave these people hope and faith, and I think that’s one of the biggest things one can give to someone when they are down and out. He was once asked about how he would feel if there is a headline that says ‘Vivek Oberoi: The Next Superstar!’ and he turned around and said ‘Vivek Oberoi builds cancer hospital for the poor and needy. Builds free school and home for underprivileged children. Now those are headlines I dream about!’ He is one of those people who is so compassionate about disadvantaged women and children that he will go to any extent to make life comfortable for them and that is one quality I really admire about Vivek! He never creates drama about his social work, he never calls up the media to tell them to cover his every move, it’s the media that follows him. Fair enough, he is a public figure after all, but then again, it’s unfortunate that they choose to bash him even when it comes to his charity work. Oh well, things will change soon.
Today, Vivek may be the most misunderstood guy around, but for people who know him, for people who have interacted with him, even for a few minutes, know that he is real, has a genuine personality and is someone who has no airs about himself. When he does something, he does it from the heart. When he speaks about something close to his heart, he speaks with so much passion that it’s inspiring. It’s touching.
Critics and enemies can say what they want, they can all him publicity-hungry, they can beat his name to the ground, but in the end, only his true fans and admirers know how great he is. There’s no one else like him and there never will be. He is one of a kind.
I’m eagerly awaiting his upcoming releases especially Shootout at Lokhandwala where once again, he plays a dreaded gangster named Maya Dolas. Life appears to have come full circle for Vivek, having debuted with a similar kind of role, and it seems like things are finally looking up for him! Hopefully, we will see him do many more good films with amazing performances! I wish him all the best.
I have been saying this for a long time now and I will say it again…once Vivek bounces back up it’s going to be a good slap to all the bad mouths out there. Oh my God, I cannot wait!