Manoj Bajpayee: Bhiku Mhatre got me everything I have today

Critically acclaimed actor Manoj Bajpayee credits the 1998 Ram Gopal Varma directorial ‘Satya’ for the respect he has earned in a long-lasting career. Bajpayee played gangster Bhiku Mhatre in the film, a role that made him an overnight sensation.

“Satya is not only remembered as a gangster movie but also as a cult movie. It stood out for the way it was crafted and told. It was one of those films where we see gangsters as human beings, and this is what had fascinated the audience,” Bajpayee said.

“I feel Bhiku Mhatre has given me a career that has lasted for so many years and is still going strong by God’s grace. I feel lucky that I was blessed with that kind of a role which changed a lot of things for me. It is great to see how people still remember Bhiku Mhatre with so much fondness,” he added.

Talking about the best memory from the shooting days, Manoj shared: “Everyday on the shoot was the best day with every crew member working with utmost passion and energy. That was a time when we had each other’s backs because we knew we didn’t have anybody outside, it was just all of us with our belief in the project that things will change after this.”

“It goes without saying that the film had a positive impact and gave me a career. I had done six films before ‘Satya’, including a television show. But Satya in a true sense has given me so much respect and a long-lasting career. It had truly changed my life which made people notice me as an actor,” added Manoj, who even received the National Film Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in the film.

Now that the film is set to go on TV channel, Bajpayee acknowledges the power of the small screen to take quality entertainment right into the living rooms. “Television is a far reaching medium and it goes everywhere, in all nooks and corners of this country where so many people sit and watch the movie together with their family. Even after 22 years of its release, it feels good to see how Satya is being loved and watched by the people. Bhiku Mhatre’s character in the film got me everything I have today,” said Manoj.