Ayushmann Khurrana: Was almost blind when shooting AndhaDhun
His decision to approach Sriram Raghavan for AndhaDhun stemmed from his desire to take a hiatus from the slice-of-life films he'd been working on.
But Ayushmann Khurrana knew that by agreeing to play a blind pianist in the thriller, he was set to take a leap of faith.
As he chronicles his journey of stepping into the world of darkness, the actor recalls how he picked up certain nuances from a visually impaired pianist.
"I met a blind pianist named Rahul, who came to Sriram sir's office. I noticed how he approached the piano and marked his centre," says the actor, as he goes on to replicate the gesture mid-air, before us. At home, Khurrana would slip on an eye mask and go about his day.
"I'd also walk the streets with my team, learn how [the visually impaired] use their stick, and go about daily activities like climbing stairs or making omelettes. We did this for three months.
Despite that, for the shoot, the team got a special pair of lenses from London that made me look blind. Those lenses hindered my sight by 80 per cent. Coupled with the black glasses, my vision was affected by 90 per cent. That's how I shot the entire film." He adds that these exercises helped him perfect his act. "Since I was not able to see through the glasses, my body language would change. I'd be more skeptical while walking, which would translate better for the character."