Aniruddha Jatkar
Aniruddha Jatkar.PR Handout

Aniruddha Jatkar is a multifaceted talent who has his roots in Dharwad. He did Diplomas in Hindustani Vocal Light Music and interior designing in Mumbai. As his father was an architect, it was only natural for Aniruddha to work under him after doing the interior designing course.

Acting as a profession has always been on back of his mind and his theatre background was a bonus. Life (or God as he likes to say) had special plans for him as he came to Bengaluru after his sister enrolled for a course in Chitra Kala Parishath. He was introduced to director Dinesh Baboo by a friend and his journey in films soon started with Chitra.

The actor is turning 45 on Saturday, February 16. Ahead of his birthday, the actor speaks about wearing multiple hats -- short-film making, social activities and more. Excerpts from the interview:

What does this birthday mean to you?

Birthday is a reminder that we have grown a year old. It brings new dreams, hopes, surprises and challenges that the God wants us to face.

How do you celebrate birthday?

For me, family always comes first. Our busy lifestyles do not permit us to meet and greet our well-wishers often and this is one occasion people make it a point to bond. It feels nice when everyone – from friends to relatives – remember and sends you wishes. It also injects a lot of positivity.

You are an actor, singer, script writer and short-film maker! Is it easy to wear multiple hats?

If you are positive in life and determined to give cent percent to what you love to do, I think you can manage multiple things. If I am working on something now, I do it with utmost sincerity without bothering about the results.

To give you an example, we had conducted a short-film making course from our trust four years ago in association with The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. The idea was to share the knowledge of whatever I have learnt from my experience from the FTII in Pune. We conducted it with nominal charges because the moment it becomes free people tend to take it lightly.

Four years later, the students who had taken part in the course made me do short-films which have now found a place in the Asia Book of Records and the India Book of Records. So, I believe everything happens for a reason.

Aniruddha Jatkar
Aniruddha Jatkar with the four medals and certificates.PR Handout

You went on a record-settng spree with short movies. How did it happen?

Anand Murthy, who learnt short-film making from our trust, had been asking me to do a short movie for years. I used to tell him that I would support them in whatever way possible if they are willing to do one. Once, I was requested to write a script after his friend passed away due to smoking habit.

My script was liked by him, but somehow they could not make a short-film. Finally, I decided to produce it from our banner. They enjoyed the complete process of making and were asking me whether I have any other scripts ready.

Although the scripts were not ready, I told them "yes" so as not to discourage them. Looking at their passion and interest, I, subsequently, started writing scripts. So, from one film it became six and all the six movies did not have dialogues.

However, post-production took a lot of time. Finally, the products were ready for release on September 18 for Dr Vishnuvardhan's birthday. People loved all the six short movies. One fine day, after one and half month, I realised that I should apply for the records. That's why I keep telling the God, above us, is watching and will reward our hard work.

It won:
Most number of short-films released on the same day

Most number of short-films without dialogues released on the same day
Most number of short-films on social issues released on the same
Most number of short-films in different genres released on the same day

Please throw light on the social activities carried out by the Vibha Charitable Trust?

From our trust, we conduct free blood camps, free health check-ups, etc., in association with NGOs that include Rotary International and Lions Club. We collaborated with Narayana Hrudayalaya, BGS, Poornasoodha Cancer Foundation and Red Cross for various activities. 

Our camps have provided eye surgeries, heart surgeries, medicines, artificial limbs and more than one lakh people have benefitted from it. For the previous year's death anniversary of Dr Vishnuvardhan, Vibha Charitable Trust tied up with Rotary Bengaluru South East, which partnered with Needy Heart Foundation to raise funds which was donated for the heart surgeries of the needy children.

Also, when I am invited to events as a judge or chief guest, I tell the organisers not to spend money on felicitating me, rather I ask them to plant saplings at the event. I feel this is one of the ways through which we can do our bit for our future generations. Apart from these activities, we have done a lot of other activities.

The USP of the short films is that all the short films convey a social message despite being devoid of any dialogue. These short films belong to different film-genres such as horror, thriller, comedy, crime, drama and political satire. There are two versions –
1. with captions, titles and credits in English
2. with captions, titles and credits in Kannada

The short films are titled:
Candle light (Duration: 5 minutes 30 seconds, Genre: Horror)
Save (Duration: 1 minute 52 seconds, Genre: Comedy)
Shantam Papam (Duration: 1 minute, Genre: Crime)
Smoke (Duration: 3 minutes 13 seconds, Genre: Thriller)
Water (Duration: 3 minutes 23 seconds, Genre: Drama )
Vaishanva Jan To (Duration: 3 minutes 15 seconds, Genre: Political satire) – this short film has captions, and titles and credits only in English

Bharathi Vishnuvardhan with Aniruddha Jatkar
Bharathi Vishnuvardhan with Aniruddha Jatkar.PR Handout

I heard you mentioning about the God several times during the interview. Are you a spiritual person?

Not just me, everyone in my home is into spirituality. We are not religious and celebrate every festival that include Christmas and Eid.

Since your debut till now, you more or less look the same. What is your fitness secret?

I exercise regularly. I do not follow specific diets and eat everything but with some restrictions. And being spiritual brings a lot of positivity in me. May be the combination of all these factors are the reasons that make me look younger.

Finally, Dr Vishnuvardhan's memorial remains an unfulfilled dream of your family and his fans. How do you describe your fight against the subsequent governments over the smaraka?

There have been lots of chaos around it. Frankly speaking, with every new government, it takes new twists and turns. The people who take over the power from previous government do not study the complete issue and pass new orders. I feel it would not be a difficult task if a government has the will to complete the project.

Well, we look at positive side of everything. I think the God is delaying it with some good purpose. I believe whatever happens, happens for good.

Quick Glance

Yuva Samraat
Kala Kirana
Young Lion
Yuva Kesari

Best Actor for Marathi one act play 'Namana Natavara'
Dr. Vishnu Kala Jeevi Prashashti
Kala Kiran Prashathi
Yuvaraja Prashasthi'
Dasara Shree Prashathi'
Karnataka Chitra Rasikar Sangha Award'for best film actor
Turabiya award' for social work
Dr.Rajkumar Sadbhavana Prashashti'
Kannada Rajyotstava Prashasti'from the newspapers associations
Amantrana Award

Concept, Script and Direction
Smoke (2018)
Shantam Papam, Calm the wicked action (2018)
Save (2018)
Vaishnav Jan To (2018)
Water (2018)
Candlelight (2018)

Documentary film
Concept, Script and Direction: Documentary film on life and work of Dr. Bharathi
Vishnuvardhana, legendary actress of Indian cinema and
Padmashree Awardee which is tentatively titled 'Bal Bangara'
(under production)