Nawazuddin Siddiqui has been in the US shooting for his next international project, No Man's Land for the last few weeks. He had attended the International Emmy Awards in New York, where his British crime drama TV series, McMafia, won the Best Drama series. Riding high on global acclaim for his work, Nawazuddin feels the recognition abroad and in India has been fulfilling.
"International filmmakers and actors are watching good Indian content. We, too, are aware of the good films from Korea or Europe or US, similarly, they are aware of the good films we make, irrespective of the box office fate of that film. Moreover, I don't care about box office and if I did, I would have to cater to films that make crores and then need songs and certain emotions to make them work. Such movies are great but ultimately, as an actor, you are known for the choice of roles and films," he says, adding, "There are many actors who have given many super successful films but not many would be remembered over time. And thank God, I am getting good opportunities, so main unka fayada kyun nahin uthaun? For me, being a successful actor is being able to choose the kind of work I want to do," he shares. Nawazuddin's other TV show Sacred Games lost to McMafia at the IEmmy's but he has a different take on the subject. "Being nominated was a victory in itself. The show has been appreciated worldwide and for Sacred Games to have reached that level was a big achievement," he says.
This year, other than the TV show, the actor was seen in three films -Thackeray, Photograph and Motichoor Chaknachoor, which didn't set the box office registers ringing. Nawazuddin believes that some good films may not work at the box office, but give you worldwide recognition.
"At times, when a movie is made in a certain budget and doesn't give the expected returns on opening weekend, but it never flops as it goes on to making money on digital platforms. 2019 was a good year for me as I did some good roles and then the awards I got this year including the Lesley Ho Asian Film Talent Award at the Singapore International Film Festival, the Golden Dragon Award at the Cardiff International Film Festival in UK and now the IEmmy. For me, this year was huge." He has Sudhir Mishra's next, Roam Rome Mein and Bole Chudiyan up for release next year.
Ask him if he is getting choosier or taking on less work and the actor replies, "I had three releases and a TV show which was a lot for me. I am not looking at doing five films in a year nahin toh meri band baj jayegi. There is no need to work so much. I get more satisfaction in the kind of movies I am doing these days."