Acclaimed actor Pankaj Tripathi has a funny story from his struggling days when he used to give a lot of auditions for work. The National School of Drama graduate remembers that during his phase of struggle he would walk into random casting offices with his photos for auditions.
Asked for a reference, and he would say, "Ishwar Ji (god)". "The maker of all and the ultimate reference - God. I never had any reference and I knew nobody. After a few disappointments, I realised no one cross-verifies references. It was an informal norm that people held on to, for longer than they should have. I decided to take Ishwar's name and much to my surprise I started getting roles!" Pankaj said.
Pankaj Tripathi still believes it was God who led him into the industry. "It was years before anyone could spot my bluff and by then I had already done a few memorable scenes. I still believe it's God who led me to this industry. I am not even remotely from the film world. I had no reference and I knew nobody. But doors kept opening for me like the universe was conspiring to make things happen," he added.
It's been a great journey for Pankaj. "It has been a dream journey so far and I will eternally be grateful to God. If anyone asks me now for a reference, I'll say Ishwar ji in a heartbeat. It always works!" he said.