Rafi Hossain: Welcome to Uncensored with Rafi Hossain. We are here with the popular actor Shahidul Alam Sachchu. Thank you for giving us your time. You may disagree with me, but it seems that you exaggerate your acting sometimes. Do you do it because the director instructed you to do so, or is it because you get immersed in the role so much that it happens naturally?
Shahidul Alam Sachchu: I am always open to criticism; I do agree with you, and I do this intentionally. If you look at actors from all over the world, you will see that most actors that are doing well exaggerate their acting from time to time. So, I would say that I’m proud to be able to do this. I first did it when the halls we had were much bigger than the cineplexes people go to nowadays. By exaggerating my acting, I made the characters seem larger than life. When so many people sat in the crowded halls to see those films, the exaggeration seemed alright. But now, since we have cineplexes which hold a much smaller audience, the same exaggeration might not seem fitting. Those cineplexes require a different acting pattern, and I think that is something many artists need to learn.
Rafi: You are a very brilliant actor and have done a lot of powerful roles. Would you call yourself a director’s actor?
Sachchu: Of course, I am a director’s actor. What many actors don’t understand is that the director knows what kind of acting would suit the actors the best. Directors have the ideas for the project in their head, and the actors don’t know those ideas better than them. I always try to listen to the directors because of this.
Rafi: You used to work in theatre a lot in the past. Why is it that you don’t do that much anymore?
Sachchu: To work in theatre, you need a certain form of honesty. When I used to only do theatre, I would earn very little, and had to struggle financially. But when I worked for a corporate firm for some time, I somehow lost that honesty. When I realised it, I decided to take a hiatus from theatre. But now, I have started working on a theatre play. I sold my car when I realised that I don’t get to interact with regular people while going from place to place. When I first started working in theatre, I would use the tempos, and I was able to interact with and hear the struggles of ordinary people. That helped me develop the characters I played.
Rafi: Since you have become quite a popular figure, you don’t face the same struggles as they do. Am I correct?
Sachchu: No, I may not be able to relate to their struggles, but I will go through this process of travelling via tempo as I plan on doing theatre for some time. We have already started our work on plays we will be doing to celebrate the fiftieth victory day of Bangladesh. One of those plays will be directed by me and one by Mohsina, a student of Syed Jamil Ahmed.
Rafi: You are working with a television channel, and with the amount of television viewers decreasing rapidly, it is apparent that there is a crisis prevalent in the television industry, and I think that in ten years, most television channels would have to shut down. Even though every actor or director is concerned about this issue, the television channels seem to be doing nothing about it. Why is that?
Sachchu: I think that if the television industry keeps on heading in this direction, it will take much less than ten years for them to shut down. There are many reasons why people watching television prefer foreign channels over Bangladeshi ones. Most people watching television in Bangladesh are the housewives, who get a few hours in the evening after finishing all their work. Even though Indian channels understand this and broadcast their serials then, our channels don’t. Bangladeshi channels showcase talk shows around that time. I think the channel owners need to train their workers better. They need to invest there and make better content. That would greatly help the television industry. I don’t know exactly why the owners aren’t doing anything about it. I think that it may be that they have been earning the money in one way for so long that they don’t feel too eager to change it. In the past, television channels here would compete with Indian channels, and even people in India would watch our channels. Now, we are facing this crisis, and I really am confused as to why the television owners are not doing anything about it.
Rafi: What is the most favourite role that you have played so far?
Sachchu: I can’t pick a single one, but if I am to name a few, then I have to say that I loved working on Giasuddin Selim’s Swapnajaal. I also loved working on Nargis Akhter’s Meghla Akash, which helped me get my first National Film Award, and there are so many other films that I loved working on.
Rafi: Who are your favourite actors?
Sachchu: I absolutely love the acting of Aly Zaker, Asaduzzaman Noor, Humayun Faridi, Utpal Dutt and Robi Ghosh, and many others. I enjoy watching Bangladeshi actors more than Hollywood actors to be honest. I might be doing a Hollywood film soon, called MR-9, directed by Asif Akbar. JAAZ Multimedia and Silverline Entertainment is producing the film, with JAAZ getting twenty percent of the film’s rights.
Rafi: Do you have any actor or director that you still haven’t had the opportunity to work with, but would love to in the future?
Sachchu: I have been fortunate enough to work with almost every prominent actor in Bangladesh. I don’t have any specific director that I want to work with as I don’t find any other director in Bangladesh, apart from the ones that I work with, who would be able to do good projects.
Rafi: Do you have any parting message for the readers?
Sachchu: I would request everyone to love each other and our country. If we can love each other and start caring for each other, we can help our country grow a lot.