Fashion tips for men from actor Sanjay Gagnani, TV's leading man

One of the most popular names on Indian TV, Sanjay Gagnani opens up about his love for acting, his marriage and much more in an exclusive conversation with The Man

sanjay gagnani dancing Print on print: Embracing maximalism subtly, this set is perfectly paired with a pair of sneakers to balance the ensemble’s colours. The black T-shirt lets the bold details of the jacket and pants stand out and be the dominating point of this look

Kundali Bhagya fame actor and a popular name on TV, Sanjay Gagnani gets candid about his love, life and work

What drew you to the film industry?

Seeing how my art made everyone happy and left a smile on people’s faces was the primary motivational force. I wasn’t very great at academics but always loved to participate in theatre and extracurricular activities. I’d choreograph plays and take part in music competitions all the time. Which made my family, friends and me very happy. Entertaining people was my calling so I knew from very early on that I wanted to be in the film industry. 

sanjay gagnani looking at wardrobe Fuschia fever: This look is fun, offbeat but just enough, and comfortable. Attuned to Sanjay’s personal style on his day offs, the ensemble encapsulates his experimental spirit and champions comfort
sanjay gagnani with wardrobe

Going into the entertainment industry, did you always know you wanted to be an actor? How did your family react to this career path? 

In school and college, I wasn’t exactly sure which medium would be the right fit for me as an entertainer, because I was interested in music and dancing too. At that time I used to act in college projects during my post-grad and my peers used to appreciate me a lot. The more I worked, and the appreciation I got made it clear that acting was what I had to pursue. My family, touchwood, has been the most supportive from day one. After college, they wanted me to get an MBA but I wanted to do something more relevant to the field I’ll eventually work in. I had my heart set on a Mass Media course and my parents didn’t even think twice to send me to Bombay and let me pursue that. I’m very grateful for them, and in many ways those years helped me build the foundation of my career. I still remember how I used to bunk college lectures to go for auditions.

What’s your favourite childhood memory?

I can’t possibly single out one memory... they’re all so dear to my heart. I feel very blessed that God has gifted me with a perfect family. Fortunately, I had a poster childhood. To say that I was a spoiled child would be an understatement. 

sanjay gagnani pink Like the cool kids: Taking a page from the book of Y2K fashion, this look is inventive with just a touch of the eccentric. The feminine pink is sartorially juxtaposed against a darker violet, and white shines all over the accessories, making the look really stand out

Looking back, who do you cherish working with the most?

I have a huge crush on Kareena Kapoor Khan! Ever since I was a child, I’ve been a fan of hers and have always admired her. So when I got a chance to share screen space with her in Madhur Bhandarkar’s Heroine, I was thrilled and honoured. It was an unreal experience, a real dream come true and something I’ll cherish all my life.

If you could change something about the film industry, what would it be?

I feel filmmakers should consider previous work experience before hiring anyone for a project. A lot of professionals and individuals in our business don’t have any sort of formal training before they join their respective departments. I understand that on-ground training is the most important, but educational training is vital. Otherwise it gets challenging for the people they’re working with. 

Looking back, which project of yours has been the most challenging?

All projects have been personally been challenging for me. I learn something new and evolve with every project. If a given project isn’t demanding, it means I’m not growing alongside. That being said, Kundali Bhagya, which I have been a part of for almost half a decade, has been the most challenging. I was asked to make a cameo appearance on the show for two months almost 5 years ago. It has transformed into this massive project now. Through the 5 seasons, and 1300 episodes, the makers have encouraged me to do my best and it has been a journey that I cherish. 

You recently got married. How has life changed for you post-marriage?

My life has changed completely but also not changed at all if that makes sense. My wife and I had dated a long time before tying the knot, so our equation has pretty much remained the same. But otherwise, I’ve become more caring, even more possessive! Professionally, I have to admit, lady luck is real. I’m now offered projects that I couldn’t even dream of getting before marriage. I’m getting more opportunities in my current roles. So even professionally it’s been a blessing. My wife is truly my lucky charm. 

Tell us something about one of your upcoming projects.

I have something dropping soon on OTT, but it’s too soon to comment on it. But I have been in talks for a new project that would be amazing for my audience. For my future projects, my only goal is to be a part of a lot more. Do a lot of reality shows, entertain people worldwide, to be seen on different platforms, irrespective of whether it’s OTT or films. I just want to deliver content-driven projects that create a space in people’s hearts.

sanjay gagnani with camera Dapper Dan: A double-breasted blazer is the epitome of polished style and is usually reserved for elegant soirees. But this suit goes beyond. Seamlessly casual and colourful, it is playful, fun and so easy

What’s your relationship like with fashion?

I’m really moody with my fashion. Sometimes I want to go overboard but most days I want to keep my looks low-key and understated. It’s just a reflection of my mood. Barring award shows, I’m pretty chill about my style and I always value comfort first. You can’t please everyone so I believe you should wear what you feel comfortable, confident and happy in.

QUICK TAKE:

A film/show everyone should see: I’m currently enjoying She on Netflix. I’m a huge fan of Imtiaz Ali sir and that’s his project. The storyline is also very gripping and intriguing. Apart from that, my all-time favourite is Jab We Met 

sanjay gagnani multi colour jacket Seeing double: Comfortable yet stylish while playing it safe, this look encapsulates Sanjay’s relationship with fashion perfectly. The double-tone ensemble is dapper but also casual at the same time

Someone you look up to for fashion cues: Shahid Kapoor, hands down

Actors you’d like to work with: Shah Rukh Khan, Amitabh Bachchan, Aamir Khan

Your go-to cheat/comfort meal: It has to be either butter chicken with roomali roti or rajma rice

Your favourite book: The only thing I love to read is scripts

Best travel memory: Gili Islands in Indonesia are just magical. Away from traffic, city and pollution. That place is a piece of heaven 

sanjay gagnani on couch Monochrome moments: Acing monochrome, this set is funky, comfortable yet tasteful enough to wear to meetings. With the white T-shirt acting as the perfect canvas, Sanjay stands out in this all-blue set! 
sanjay gagnani blue jacket

The best advice you ever received: I read this somewhere and I’m not entirely sure who said it but it’s stayed with me —  ”To be a good actor, you need to be a good human being first”

Disclaimer

The comments posted here/below/in the given space are not on behalf of The Man. The person posting the comment will be in sole ownership of its responsibility. According to the central government's IT rules, obscene or offensive statement made against a person, religion, community or nation is a punishable offense, and legal action would be taken against people who indulge in such activities.