Recently, Amit Sial, who can be seen in Sony LIV’s new show Kathmandu Connection shared his story with Humans of Bombay.
Amit Sial grew up in a middle class family in Kanpur. His dad manufactured shoes and mother was a librarian.
Being born into middle-class increased Amit’s desire to perform well in school.
“I tried to do my best in school; in the 5th grade, I acted in a play for the first time. The applause I got was something else; so I continued acting in plays. Once our teacher Mishraji even pushed for me to get the lead role! I wanted to pursue acting, but giving up my studies wasn’t an option. So I went to Delhi for my B.Com.”
At Delhi University, while studying at Delhi College of Arts and Commerce, Amit came across an ad for an English musical.
“I auditioned and got a role; I was 18. But my parents weren’t confident I could make it as an actor. Mom said, ‘Have a backup plan.’”
Soon, his parents started discussing the option of further studies. They took out a loan to send him to Australia.
Amit landed in Melbourne to obtain his Post-Graduation diploma in International Business from Swinburne University of Technology.
“I was studying and working two jobs to make ends meet. Despite that, on the weekends, I did theatre.”
After graduation, when Amit came back to India he began working with his uncle in Delhi on a decent salary.
Soon after, he bumped into someone from his theatre days.
“It felt like a sign, you know? So I got back to acting. With each performance, something in me kept shifting – it was as if my heart was filling up. So I decided to act full time.”
Amit was then 29 yo and his parents “freaked out” at his decison to change career.
“I told them, ‘Aap itni chinta kyun kar rahe ho? Aap ko kya darr hai?’ I was done being afraid of the uncertainty.”
In 2003, Randeep Hooda who was working on a Ram Gopal Verma film, called and advised Amit to audition for a role.
“I came to Bombay. Even though I didn’t get that role, I stayed back. Then began the rigmarole of auditions.”
For one such audition, Amit even reached 20 minutes late.
“Everyone was furious. But before I left, they said, ‘Thoda weight kam kar lena.’ I was confused, but later I found out that I’d got the role!”
Amit got Rs 50,000 for that film and by the time the shooting finished he thought that this was it!”
“I’d made it. Maybe it was ego, but I kept rejecting all the supporting role offers I got – mujhe hero banna tha!”
But unfortunately that film didn’t release for 4 years and soon the supporting role also stopped coming.
“So I started from scratch – I did theatre, small roles…I destroyed my ego. That’s when web series like A Simple Murder, Kathmandu Connection and Maharani, came my way. It took years, but I found my place in OTT. I realised ki hero nahi banna, stardom bhi nahi chahiye, bas acting karni hai.”
Today, Amit Sial is a successful actor in Indian film and TV industry. His parents are also happy with his decision to change his career.
“I’ve made them retire in Goa! So now, every time a role comes my way, I’m thankful. I’ve realised that when you find your purpose in life, you can’t let your ego get the better of you. You only get so many chances to turn your dreams into reality– so when you get that chance, grab onto it and…don’t let go.”
Amit has appeared in films and series such as Jamtara, Mirzapur, Sonchiriya, Bombairiya, Titli, and Love Sex aur Dhokha.