When Ajay Devgn was not enjoying acting, “I felt I don’t want to work anymore”

Ajay Devgn opened up on the low phase of his life during a recent interaction at the Critics Choice Awards.

Ajay Devgn has been one of the topmost actors from Bollywood, who has been ruling the roost for as many as over 30 years. In these three decades, the actor has shown his versatility by performing varied characters in films of diverse genres. But there was a time in his life when he wasn’t enjoying his work and he was contemplating quitting. He revealed about this phase recently at the Critics Choice Awards organized by the Film Critics Guild (FCG).

When Ajay Devgn was not enjoying acting, “I felt I don’t want to work anymore”

During an interaction at the event with FCG’s Anupama Chopra, Devgn was asked whether there was any period where his love and zeal for acting faded. He said, “It has. Honestly speaking, there was a point in my life in the 90s or late 90s. Today we do one film at a time. At that time, we were doing something about 14-15 films at a time. We used to do four shifts of 5-6 hours. We used to go 7 in the morning and shoot till 12 on one set. And in the same pair of jeans we would go to the other set and change the jacket or the shirt and shoot for 4-5 hours.”

When the host asked in zest whether he was able to remember which character he played on which set, Devgn said, “So many times we forgot. And if you see in most of our films, most of us as actors had the same pair of shoes and jeans in every film because we were too lazy to change them also.”

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Returning back to the main topic, Devgn added, “I reached a point where I just wanted to stop and I was not enjoying my work. It was very funny at that time the guild had the rule that we not officially allowed to do more than 12 films. That was a point where I felt that I don’t want to work anymore. I realized this. I said I am not enjoying my work. That’s not how it should be.”

Thankfully, Devgn’s interest was reignited after he stopped working on too many films at one go. “Then I stopped doing this (working on too many films simultaneously). I started doing 2-3 films in a year. That was the only phase. Otherwise, for me, my holidays are work; I love going to work. If I have nothing to do for two days, I don’t know what to do with myself,” said the actor.

Looking back at his career, Devgn is happy that he is the only actor of that era who also did parallel cinema along with mainstream movies. “In the 90s when I started, I did completely commercial films. I (also) worked in those so-called art films by Rituparno (Ghosh) da and Govind Nihalani, which nobody did at that point of time. An actor who is doing commercial films refused to do such films. But I only did it because I knew I could learn something out of it and because you love cinema. When you love cinema, you love both the sides of cinema. You want to make the audiences happy also and you want to do things for your satisfaction also,” he said.

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Anupama Chopra asked Devgn what according to him has he been doing right to sustain for over 30 years. Much to the applause of the audience, Devgn said, “The first thing I did right was that I just minded my own business. Honestly speaking, there is so much to do, if you really have to and want to do. You really don’t have time discussing other people; in a way gossiping and being somewhere you don’t need to be really.”

Devgn was last seen in his own directorial venture Bholaa, which released last month on March 30.

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