60 Seconds to Fame
The spotlight on plus-size fashion is getting bigger and brighter. Read on to learn what Aru K Verma had to say about his life as a plus-size model, his experience in the industry, and plans for the future.
Tell us about your career as an actor. Also can you talk a little bit about how you broke into modelling?
It’s been a great run. Especially to be recognised as India’s top plus-size model. I started my journey in the entertainment industry as an actor first in 2009 and then became a recognised model in 2015 with Lakme Fashion Week. It was all through auditions and grilling, no fancy story here to break, though.
So you’ve been in this career for more than ten years now. That’s great! Where do you see yourself in another ten years?
Well, that’s a tricky question! I do see myself with a national award (laughs), lead in 2 – 3 movies like the iconic and my favourite ‘Sholay’. Well jokes apart, on a serious note I definitely see myself playing great characters which leave a legacy behind. For an actor the journey is ongoing and the hunger for good roles is insatiable. It’s all about reaching a point where you are proud of yourself.
What’s your favourite/least favourite thing about being a model?
Nothing really. I have totally enjoyed the journey and I love ramp walks. The adrenalin rush just before the show, the walk and the aftermath of pictures. Everything makes you feel come alive. It’s like 60 seconds to fame, adrenaline pumping and rushing through your body.
You made your debut in Bollywood with Imtiaz Ali’s blockbuster Rockstar. How did you get this role?
Now that’s a story. It was the 18th night at 1:30 am to 19th (i.e. my birthday) and Abhishek, the AD called me and I thought it was a prank, that a friend of mine was playing, but when I realised it wasn’t, then it was a different story.
How was it working with Shahrukh Khan and Anushka Sharma in Jab Harry Met Sejal?
Well working with Shahrukh Sir, has been one of the coolest and the greatest journeys in my career. He is so effortless and takes care of so many things while performing that it just looks like a cake walk, it’s a 7 layered cake which looks easy but the elements would shake you upon creation, he has taught me more than I could ever imagine. The amount of learning I got from Shahrukh Sir is praise-worthy. I’m speechless.
Working with Anushka Sharma was an absolute pleasure. She is very down to earth and very particular about her acting. It was a big learning experience for me to work with such perfectionists.
What about working with Ranveer Singh in Befikre?
I think you know the answer to that. Even before you say it, he is one step ahead. If you think you are fast today, he is faster. You always have to be on your toes with him and that's the beauty of it. It’s always a roller coaster ride with him.
Who’s your fashion icon?
Johnny Depp. I would love to dress like him and be that casual!
What’s the best fashion trend of all time?
Well, I love Raghavendra Rathore and his intricate work with Indian designs. I feel that is evergreen and makes you look sharp at any given time.
How would you define your personal style?
Simple and easy yet sharp. For me, comfort is a priority so I pick simple outfits that are comfortable and yet look smart.
Your biggest role model?
Amitabh Bachchan and Al Pacino.
What’s the best country you’ve been to?
India, there is so much to explore, but if you want someplace abroad then it’s Spain.
What do you believe is the key to success for a model? What qualities does one need to succeed?
There is no success model, just keep working hard and believe in yourself.
What’s one thing you can’t live with?
Bad odour. Hate it.
If there’s something you could tell your 18-year-old self, what would it be?
Be patient, it will all fall into place.
What about your dating history?
(Hahahaha) there have been a few ups and downs but not the ONE yet. My love life is based around my business and my acting career. I know it sounds boring but that’s the way it is for me. Let me now confess I am a workaholic.
For me the most important factor that I would like to see in the woman I love is that she needs to be intelligent and more ambitious than me, and one thing that I can't live without is how the hair should fall on the face while she is talking, can’t live without that, I know it’s a bit specific but can’t help it.
When was your first relationship?
In 11th grade.
Are you dating someone?
Totally dating my workout regime as of now. Need to transform quickly.
What are you working on right now and what are your future aspirations?
As of now I can’t talk about it, but when I can I will surely let you know. I want to work with Amitabh Sir and to be able to force myself in doing something out of my comfort zone.