Jimmy Sheirgill

Jimmy Sheirgill (IANS photo)

MUMBAI — He’s put on a bit of weight and says that it was the requirement for a rather mature role requirement in his latest Punjabi hit, “Shareek.” But he is now taking off soon as the only hero repeated from the earlier 2006 film in the sequel to “Tom Dick and Harry.”

Right now, he is basking in the fervor of “Happy Bhag Jayegi,” in which he plays the gray character of corporator Bagga.

Confidently, he declares: “The trailer, though honest, is just one percent of the film! It is an interesting character, and my entry alone evokes laughter.”

Right in the beginning, Sheirgill dances to the 1996 Sunny Deol hit “Yaar O Yaara” from “Jeet.”

“I am privileged that I got to do the song!” he smiles. “I have been a Sunny Deol and Sanjay Dutt fan from school. Every Sunday, our group of cousins would travel 25 kilometers from our village to watch two good films, and they were my favorites since childhood. Of course, I have danced in my own style here.”

The detailing of his character by writer-director Mudassar Aziz was very good, and Sheirgill says the cast would read everyone’s lines, not just their own.

“And we would laugh,” he adds seriously. “Few know this, but, when I get trapped in a loop of laughter, I cannot stop, and I have to put glycerin in my eyes to achieve that!”

A recurring leitmotif of Sheirgill’s work is the many comedies he has done, all with his character being serious in them, including the “Tanu Weds Manu” and “Munna Bhai” franchises. Why is that?

“It’s not been deliberate,” he replies. “But maybe my filmmakers want that, and I like what they offer me,” he says. “In all my films so far, you will be surprised to know that the maximum appreciation I got was for my straight-faced humor in ‘Dil Vil Pyaar Vyaar.’”

About “Tom Dick and Harry 2,” he promises a better film that the first.

“This is a far more interesting plot, which is why Deepak (director Deepak Tijori) took time to come out with it. There is comedy plus pain plus sympathy, and it is also inspirational.”

How does he juggle his Punjabi films with his Hindi ones?

“Most of my teams are those who work in Hindi cinema as well. The regional space is a good space with a terrific and dedicated audience. Punjabi films must evolve, like Marathi films whose content has always been good, but they have a formulaic structure, because, overseas, entire families avoid films if they are certified for Adults Only!” he says.

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