Our favourite celebrities talk about four people who have inspired them.
- Dad: All good things begin at home. And it’s his goodness and respect for people that I have learnt from him. And being known as his son was what touched me.
- Mom: She was the embodiment of selflessness. Her entire life revolved around us and yet she was always there to help and lend a ear to people. This truly inspired me.
- Sachin and Rahman: Two icons who taught me that goodness prevails. The humility is what one should learn from them.
- My friend Ashok and cousin Saroja: They shook me out of my comfort zone and made me take myself seriously. They made me take responsibility for my decisions.
- My grandmother: The way she conducted herself and brought up mother inspired me in more ways than one.
- My father: He ran the family. The fact that we are so grounded and strong as a family is all because of him.
- My mother: No one can be my best friend and worst critic at the same time with the same intensity.
- Marlon Brando: His autobiography, which speaks of his activism and his life at the movies, is humbling and an inspirational read.
- Khushboo: When she mentioned that I was her favourite actor it really touched me because she’s one of the nicest human beings I’ve met. Coming from her it meant a lot.
- My mother: I had a terrible viral attack and when my mom put aside everything and nursed me back to health and I felt like a five-year-old once again.
- Anu: My designer and a close friend with whom I had lost touch. We met a few days back and bonded as we chatted about old times. And I knew how much I had missed her and the flowers she sent me spoke so much about that.
- Pattu: A mongrel puppy I fostered for a couple of months, now in a beautiful home, taught me a lot about love and loyalty.
- My grandfather Ramanaidu: Whatever I am today and do is because of what this man did 50 years ago; moving from a small village to Chennai and establishing himself as one of the most successful producers in the film industry was no easy feat.
- Authors Mario Puzo and Frederick Forsyth: I started reading their works when I was in Std IX. I must have read The Godfather at least 10 times since. Every time I read their books there’s something new to learn. The learning has greatly influenced the way I operate today, understand a film and approach a scene.
- Actor Kamal Hassan: At a time when cinema had its limitations, the kind of stuff this man did was outstanding — playing a dwarf, acting in a silent film… I have grown up watching his films and always look up to him.
- Director Ram Gopal Varma: He has always been a big influence on me even before I worked with him in “Department”. He was the guy who broke the norms with films like “Shiva” and “Satya” when the industry was stuck with conventions and stereotypes. For someone who has been in the industry for so long, his enthusiasm on the sets is just amazing.
(As told to Madhumitha Srinivasan)
- Dad: He’s the one person who’s moulded me and he’s my strength.
- Director Shankar: He’s the one reason I am here today and it’s his faith in me that’s touched me the most.
- B.R. Prassana Kumar: My guru at Swingers. Dancing has always been my asset and what he taught me gave me a break in cinema.
- My core group: My friends who always are by my side through my ups and downs and are my real stressbusters.
- Mom: I’m what I’m because of her. She’s my strength.
- A R Rahman: He gave me the break I needed at a time when I needed it the most.
- Paulo Coelho and Brian L. Weiss: Their writing and philosophy have always inspired me in more ways than one.
- My mom: She can never be replaced.
- Sister: My sister has taught me the importance of being human.
- Ko Mohan: In those three days when I shot the song Ovvoru Pookalumae Sollkirathey in “Autograph”, he taught me the importance of Life and its meaning. How we live it only once is something I learnt from him.
- Nitin: My sister’s son and his live-free and love-everyone attitude has truly inspired me.
- Mirra Alfassa also known as The Mother: The Aurobindo Ashram in Puducheerry is one place where I can pour out all my emotions and that gives me a lot of peace.
- Paulo Coelho: His books have always inspired me and they are a pleasure to read.
- Braveheart: One of the main reasons why I’m in the movies today is because of this film and the character.
- Hrithik Roshan: He has created a new trend in cinema. The way he conducts himself, his looks and his acting are all inspiring.
- Ayn Rand: Her writing is always inspirational and teaches you something new all the time.
- Shovana Narayan: My dance teacher has truly inspired me. The way she juggled work, dance, children and a home made me look at things in a different light.
- Mother: Her hard work and dedication to whatever she did touched me.
- Rajnikanth: His kindness, simplicity, love for his craft and perfection as an actor is something that you can draw inspiration from. He is someone I look up to.
- A R Rahman: He’s taught me determination, diligence and patience.
- My grandfather: The fact that I learnt punctuality from him is the biggest lesson for me.
- N.K. Sharma and Raji Sharma: They have played a very important part in grooming us making us believe in ourselves. They taught is to give it our best shot in whatever we did.
- Augustine Paul: He taught us that hard work will always pay off and to always be confident in life.
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