Filmmaker Prakash Jha, who essayed the role of a cop in Jai Gangaajal and now playing the lead in the short film Justaju - The Longing, says professionally he does not identify as an actor. Jha, known for making socio-political films like Gangaajal, Apaharan, Raajneeti, is enjoying being in front of the camera.
"I am not professionally an actor but there are people who now do think of me and there are roles offered to me. I am looking it as a new form of expression that I would like to bring into my life. I really want to do characters which I enjoy. That is the criteria," Jha told PTI.
The director is happy that his performance in the short film, that released recently on YouTube, has been appreciated. Jha won the best actor award for the same in the short film category of the first edition of New Jersey Indian International Film Festival.
Directed by Mudassir Mashalkar, Justaju chronicles a day in the life of Valmiki, whose wife expired 15 years ago.
Jha, who made his acting debut with his 2016 directorial venture Jai Gangaajal, says he is happy with the different kind of roles being offered to him.
"I was really surprised they thought of me as I am nothing like Valmiki but he (director) was quite convinced. I thought it would be a great learning experience, trying to find that character so it was fun."
Jha says the director in him does not interfere with his acting process.
"As an actor I do discuss things with my director. I follow my director's vision. But I never interfere," he adds.
Though he loves exploring the actor side of him, he equally enjoys directing films, which, the filmmaker says, is an "exhilarating" experience for him.
"Even if I am behind the camera, writing a script or shooting in front of thousands of people, it has always been enjoyable. It has been exhilarating and extremely enriching, learning process," Jha adds.