Veteran and highly respected and revered actor Naseeruddin Shah has time and again spoken on issues related to the film fraternity. He has been a part of films and theatre for almost four decades and he has seen the concept of acting schools flourishing in India.
While many veteran actors think that acting schools help individuals build a firm base before entering the industry, Naseeruddin Shah clearly begs to differ. In an interview, the 66-year-old Naseeruddin Shah explained why he hates the concept of acting schools.
“There are no acting teachers in the country, they are all shams, they are all frauds and I have no hesitation in saying this. All these people running acting schools are absolute and utter frauds, they are fooling the kids who come to them and teach them nothing. There is no acting teacher in this country and it is a really unfortunate thing, considering how old the film industry is.”
Shah, who began his career as a student of National School of Drama before he entered films, believes that it is not mandatory for individuals to opt for acting schools. He added:
“I believe that anyone who is passionate about acting can learn on his own. Dilip Kumar never went to an acting school, Amitabh Bachchan never went to an acting school, Kamal Haasan never did yet all of them are such fine actors. An actor trains himself and that is what I believe. Being in an institution is conducive to learning.”
Many would think that even though he himself was a student of NSD, how could he speak against acting schools but then he had a valid response to that too. He said:
“I learnt at National School of Drama because I had the urge to learn. I was exposed to many things I was not exposed to before, so my horizons widened, but you can do it on your own as well. I don’t think it’s essential for an actor to go to a training school to train yourself.”
Not many will agree will agree with Shah, but each one has a view and an opinion. What Shah is trying to say is that acting schools are not compulsory and that one can learn on his or her own. The point that Shah is trying to make is that you must have a will to learn. Even the best acting school or best acting teacher or best acting course cannot make you a good actor if you do not have a hunger for acting and a strong desire to experiment and learn on your own.