You feel a pleasant change in the atmosphere when you learn that Vicky Kaushal is the unofficial, national crush of India. Why pleasant? For the longest time in the Hindi cinema, the wrong kinds of gestures have converted actors into stars, while the real talents just stood there waiting for their chance to shine.
Vicky may hail from a family which has its connection in the film industry, but to be an actor he did not get the easy entrance to the house of the producer. Much like other struggling outsiders, he waited in line for his chance to come. Even after his big break in Masaan, he didn't exactly have opportunities lined up.
It was in 2018 when Vicky Kaushal's presence on the big screen (Raazi, Sanju, Manmarziyaan) and web-based films (Lust Stories, Love Per Square Foot) was felt the most. He became the soul of Sanju while playing a supporting cast.
(The last time it had happened in a Raju Hirani film was in Munna Bhai series where Arshad Warsi as Circuit basically became the wingman without whom Sanjay Dutt wouldn't have looked cooler.) You may or may not have enjoyed the film, but Vicky's presence made you realise that one needs a special kind of talent to take over a film where Ranbir Kapoor has the lead role. While working beside the handsome Ranbir Kapoor, Vicky even in his lesser attractive make-up and appearance, managed to steal your focus.
Vicky Kaushal as an actor came in an era when content and talent were getting its due credit from the audience and he soon became a national crush without even trying too hard. In fact, when he made his 'Koffee debut' in Karan Johar's Koffee With Karan, the producer had asked him 'how does it feel to be the sex symbol of India, (this show happened before the release of Uri: The Surgical Strike), Vicky (who then seemed to be oblivious about his rising stardom as the national crush) had replied, 'Am I?'
When 2019 hit, Uri: The Surgical Strike, he became the talk of the town for an entire year, although he had no other releases. Producers began to notice a new 'chocolate boy' who had been dodged or the longest time.
Vicky Kaushal's rise as an actor, star, A-lister, unofficial national crush and National Award winner, give us all a hope from the new generation of cinephiles, or the evolved generation of cinephiles who have now started filtering their entertainment content.