Following is an excerpt from the yet-to-be-written-or-commissioned autobiography of Tiger Shroff, tentatively titled ‘Ek That Tiger’, despite general opposition to that name.
There was a time in my life when I didn’t think I was going to be just an actor. Like most children, I had different, far more ambitious, dreams about what I wanted to be when I grew up.
Till the age of five, I wanted to be a romantic actor. It fascinated me to no ends to see couples dancing on mountain tops and singing love ballads about each other.
A few years later, I saw Dhoom 4, and I knew in my heart of hearts that I would be an action star.
This was days before I got the role in Heropanti, a movie that blended my two childhood ambitions, and cemented my position as the go-to action star of Bollywood.
My father always said to me, “Son, never buy apples from Lal Chand fruit seller, he charges a lot for everything.” I don’t know how it would be relevant for me or my journey, but I always replayed his saying over and over in my head, especially during the time I was struggling to get into the character for my upcoming nepotism fiesta Student of the Year: This Time It’s Personal.
If you’ve ever thought that acting is an easy job, then let me tell you different. Acting takes so much effort. I had to learn dancing for almost 15 years so that I can have some aspect of my personality that didn’t put people to sleep almost instantly. It’s like what my father always says, “If you’re going to McDonald’s then it’s pointless to come home without any fries for me.”
My first day on set was a hot mess. Everybody on set was treating me with a respect I didn’t feel I had earned. It took me back to the first day of my school when kids got so excited to hear that my name was Tiger that they treated me with a respect that felt misplaced.
I had nothing to do with being named Tiger. It was the result of a cruel bet between my parents. So on my first day of the shoot for Heropanti, I did what I had done back then. I pulled at my testicles to start crying painfully and asked for my mom to come pick me up. It was a smooth sailing afterwards.
Would I change a thing about my journey so far? Maybe. But as my father says, “Day cream and night cream are all the same. Its a sham to earn more money.”
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