Ashish Singh of Kannauj, who worked as body reference for Shah Rukh Khan in his latest Zero revealed that for years, he was bullied and ridiculed because of his height.
Just four feet tall, Ashish made it possible to bring alive SRK’s character Bauaa Singh in the film. His mannerism and body language, along with the technology was helpful for the makers.
This was more of a personal victory for Ashish who had left Kannauj with a pledge to give a befitting reply to people who used to make fun of his short height.
In an interaction with the media, Ashish said, “Their ridicule motivated me to do better in life. By the grace of God, my height became my biggest plus in life and took me to places that most people can only dream of”. It was painful to bear all that mocking. Now, I am happy that those people treat me with respect and dignity,” he added.
Born and brought up in Jasmai village of Mainpuri district, Ashish had came to Chibramau, Kannauj, in 2009 for his graduation. Dr Pratyush Dwivedi, his guardian said, “He used to cover 36 km everyday on his bicycle, travelling from his village to college in Chibramau”.
Ashish met Dr Dwivedi, who kept him at his house and also gave him a small job in his eye clinic. Ashish worked there for six years before leaving for Kanpur in 2015.
He joined a six-month long-acting course and got three Bhojpuri films which didn’t do well and he started working at small time eating joints in Bengaluru, said Dr Dwivedi. “He wanted to prove to people that he could also become an achiever,” added Dwivedi.
His got the big offer when he was in New Delhi and was working with a group of actors. Zero’s director Anand L Rai had spotted him at an event. “He was delighted with the offer and I encouraged him,” Dr Dwivedi said. Ashish appeared four rounds of audition before the makers finalized him.
Ashish said, “I lived like Shah Rukh Khan for two years so that he reflects in my body motion, action and language. ” “I used to reach the sets an hour before him where the cameras were positioned according to my height,” he added.