Speaking with Siddhant Chaturvedi feels strikingly like catching up with a friend over coffee. His relaxed energy permeates the airwaves as we connect over the phone on a lazy afternoon. Siddhant has just returned from Goa, where he was shooting for Kho Gaye Hum Kahan with Ananya Panday and Adarsh Gourav. After a captivating breakthrough in Gully Boy and garnering rave reviews for his performance in Gehraiyaan, the actor’s burgeoning career is going from strength to strength. “I haven’t had the time to stop and soak it in,” he says. “I know people are appreciating my work. It’s a good feeling.”
From humble beginnings to Bollywood’s wunderkind, Siddhant has manifested his dreams into reality. “I believed in it, and it happened,” he states. “If I dreamt that which was next to impossible, then I need to manifest bigger.” But despite his self-assuredness, there are still pinch-me moments when the reality of his remarkable journey sinks in. “From standing in audition lines to sharing screen space with industry seniors I’ve been a fan of, working with directors I have looked up to and production houses I wanted to be associated with–I feel blessed.”
Gehraiyaan is one such manifestation. A complex relationship drama about love, infidelity, and childhood trauma, it got critical acclaim and criticism in equal measure owing to the often-taboo theme. “It was for a particular section of people – mostly urban,” he says. “I knew because I come from a middle-class family, and these are not the films I’ve grown up watching. It’s not a movie you watch, get entertained for two hours, and go home. The very point was to spark a conversation, which it did.”
While he’s surrounded by beautiful women on set and has a gaggle of fangirls, the actor is in a committed relationship IRL. “I think she knows I can’t do better than her,” laughs Siddhant. “The films, events, and magazines make me look cool, but I’m a basic guy. My life has not changed.” We catch a glimpse of the real Siddhant Chaturvedi in his candid demeanour. “I am so different from the roles I’ve played. I consciously choose films that challenge me. I’m actually very boring. I’m an introvert.”
Between seeking meaningful roles and working endlessly, Chaturvedi retreats into his shell to unwind. “I’m not adventurous or that guy who attends music fests,” he says truthfully. “I like to sleep, eat mamma’s food, and chill. I like gazing outside the window. I listen to podcasts–I’m listening to Naval Ravikant right now. I write poetry and play the guitar. I enjoy gaming on my PlayStation–I’m hooked to Far Cry.” It strikes us as odd that he doesn’t mention films. “I haven’t watched one in the last four months,” he exclaims. “When I have the time to chill now, it’s with friends and family. Earlier, I would watch a film daily. I didn’t go to acting school and learnt about world cinema through movies. That’s why I never watch a film twice–it’s a waste of time.” Not even your own, we ask? “I never watch my films,” he reveals. “I’ve watched them once at the screening. I can’t enjoy things I am in–I feel awkward.”
Siddhant is chameleonic in his ability to inhabit a role, and he’s changing gears with his upcoming projects. “I don’t want to repeat my formula,” he says. “People know me for intense characters, but my next, Phone Bhooth, is going to be a whacked-out comedy.” Speaking of Yudhra, an action thriller, he says, “It is my most exciting project. I want to redefine action with this film.” It’s a little known fact that Siddhant is trained in martial arts, taekwondo, and gymnastics, and he intends to flex his muscles with this one. “We’re not sticking to the norms and taking action to a new level–it will be genre-defining.” This will be followed by Kho Gaye Hum Kahan. “It’s a light-hearted film about friendships and love being influenced by social media.”
While he’s revelling in the momentum, he intends to hit pause and dissociate for self-preservation. “I’ve been going on and on for the last few years. I need to detach myself for a bit,” he says. “You can’t be in the limelight and evolve as an actor. You need to keep refuelling yourself.” Siddhant is planning his escape to the hills. “You feel tiny in the mountains–like you don’t matter. That inspires me.”
Preternaturally talented and bursting with unbridled drive, the actor knows the possibility of what he can achieve is endless. “I am not content with what I have right now, he says. “I can do more, and there’s so much to explore. The audience needs to see that I am more than what they have seen until now.”
Monogram Jacquard sweatshirt, monogram patchwork denim pants, monogram chain bracelet, and LV beads bracelet, all by Louis Vuitton Cuban chain by Zillionaire India Vodoo ring by BhavyaRamesh Jewellery
Medusa music hoodie, Medusa music denim jacket and jeans, all by Versace. Tennis bracelet and baguette ring by Zillionaire India. White shoes by Zegna.
Monogram wool Jacquard polo shirt, stretch wool jogging pants and the long Kensington heritage trench coat, all by Burberry. Cuban bracelet, Bauhaus model 5 red ring and Bauhaus model 6 black ring, all by Misho Designs
Content director & Editor: Kamna Malik; Photographer: Tarun Vishwa; Jr. Fashion Editor: Shaeroy Chinoy; Hair: Gautam Arora; Make-up: Poonam Surve; Words: Namrata Kedar; Cover Design: Nidhi Nagvekar; Art Direction: Sanjana Suvarna; Production: Imran Khatri Productions, Radhika Chemburkar; Editorial Assistant: Aliza Fatma; Assisted by: Komal Shetty, Priyuta Sodiwala; Artist’s management agency: Spice Social.