New Delhi: He should be on cloud nine considering his rapidly growing fan following on "Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa 4", but television actor Sushant Singh Rajput is disappointed about certain "nasty" media reports maligning his name. Nevertheless, he does not let it affect his performance in any way.
"I know I was popular before `Jhalak...` thanks to `Pavitra Rishta`, but I am glad that the popularity has increased manifold ever since I have come on `Jhalak...`. I am very happy with the response of the viewers, but I have mixed feelings about my success as some sections of media are trying to bring me down through nasty reports," Sushant told IANS.
The actor was referring to a few reports against him regarding his absence from a Republic Day special episode for Zee TV, for threatening Sony TV officials to leave "Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa 4" and for getting into a scuffle with some college boys, for which he was allegedly held in a police station overnight.
Finally, experiencing negatives of a celebrity status, is it?
"I really don`t know! On one hand, people have been praising me saying things like `You`re a superb dancer` or `You`re so nice as a person`, and on the other hand, there are these negative and baseless reports. It`s honestly distracting. I knew from the beginning that these things come with success and I have to deal with it, but people are bringing me down for no reason.
"My family in Delhi is getting concerned reading about it, and so it is very disturbing. I chose to ignore the reports initially, but they are getting very nasty now, and I might be forced to take some legal action if it goes out of hand," he said about the reports that are contradictory to his portrayal of a calm and patient Manav in "Pavitra Rishta".
The 24-year-old went against family tradition of being a doctor or engineer to pursue his passion for performing arts. He started as a dancer with the Shiamak Davar troupe, and there was no looking back thereafter.
Opportunities kept coming his way as he even took to theatre, through which he got his first break on the small screen with Balaji Telefilms` "Kis Desh Mein Hai Meraa Dil". He was later roped in as the main lead for "Pavitra Rishta" and his character Manav made became a household name.
"I have taken all my projects very seriously. I was very much like Preet (his character in `Kis Desh Mein...`) in real life; so it was a little easy. But `Pavitra Rishta` took me to another level.
"It is very tough to essay Manav because he is totally unlike me - he is full of emotions, very patient and responsible. I really look up to Manav and wish I could be like him - but I am more than happy that viewers have respected and loved me for the way I have played the role.
"Dance is something I have always loved and what better platform than `Jhalak...` to show it. Viewers got to see another side of me and they have loved me in that as well," he said.
These days Sushant has been devoting 12 hours to "Pavitra Rishta", six to seven hours to "Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa" and has the remaining hours to himself.
After he is done with the dance reality show, he plans to pursue a short, three-month course in direction from the New York Film Academy - something that has been on his `to do list` for long. Sushant has earlier assisted Mohit Suri in "Raaz 2" and hopes to assist filmmakers like Anurag Kashyap and Vishal Bharadwaj some time soon.