For an outsider, the dream of working in Bollywood is next to attaining nirvana. In a country of more than 1.3 billion people, making a space for yourself in the film industry is extremely tough, if not impossible. Thousands land up in Mumbai every day to pursue their dreams and thousands return without realising them.
Sanjeev Pandey , a theatre actor from Kolkata, is not someone you will bet on in this milieu. Generally, actors don’t come from this strata of society in mainstream Hindi films.
He says, “I belong to a family where no one can even think of it. Like many of us, a government job would have been my ticket to a better job. I wasn’t from a poor family, but my aspirations were limitless. I was mentally trained to become government servants, but films have my own charm. We watched films on VCR. Talking about a film and hoping to be a part of it are two completely different things. Sometimes I did modelling at the local level. I knew about theatre only when I came to PADATIK.”
A sustainable income could loosen the clutch of fate. Sanjeev Pandey says, “I wanted a job that could give me the freedom to do theatre, I was so desperate to act that I was willing to feature in low-cost music albums.” He did his first play as school boy with legendary Shyamanand Jalan in Padatik Kolkata ‘Kauwa Chale Hans Ki Chaal’.
But he couldn’t pursue it regularly because of family restrictions of study.
Amidst all this at a very later stage he moved to Mumbai in 2016 and started giving auditions and got very good response in television. Initially he did a lot of small roles in TV serials like Savdhan India, Crime patrol, Porus etc. His major breakthrough was when he was selected to play Dr. A P J Kalam in National Geographic Mega Icons which later awarded the best Indian Television Academy award in 2019.
First movie he did is Scotland which was nominated for OSCARS academy award.
His latest movie is The Big Bull of Ajay Devgn Production starring Abhishek Bachchan which is releasing in September 2020.