The young actor Radovan Vujović discusses the challenges of his profession, the roles that made his name and the taste of Belgradian theatre audience
Radovan Vujović played in popular TV series, well known to the widest audiences, in films and theatre plays that survived, for years, on the program of Yugoslav Drama Theatre, where he is a permanent member of the company. He takes his profession seriously and considers it as carefully as art demands.
You were eighteen when you first stood in front of a film camera. Has acting stood up to your expectations?
– Honestly, I had no expectations from acting. When I enrolled in the Academy, just shy of turning sixteen, I had no clear picture of what acting was, why I was enrolling there, what was in store for me and what my expectations were. All I had was a desire to discover what it was, and I enjoyed doing just that.
What’s the challenge and what’s the risk of your chosen profession?
– The challenge is to keep improving, learning, to be new and interesting every time, to overcome your own demons. The challenge is to leave your comfort zone and everything you know and take a bold step forward. The challenge is not to give up, to persevere, to endure. The risk is to lose yourself, ignore your gut and, in these difficult times, reach for quick, external solutions, to do things for money…
“Šejtanov ratnik” (The Devil’s Warrior) is still listed as an example of enthusiasm and creativity among the youth. What are your memories of this project?
– It’s a mixed bag. I remember many good things, excitement and joy of filming my first film; I remember learning a lot, despite the enormous gap in my experience and knowledge; making some friends… But I also remember some not-so-good things, for example, that the majority of the cast, myself included, never got any of the promised fee. Certainly, it was an important experience for me, I learned a lot from it.
TV series are some form of a guarantee for popularity, due to large audiences. What is your impression of the success of “Vojna Akademija” (Military Academy), which you played in?
– The series really did achieve major success and popularity and I am happy to have been a part of it. Each episode was seen by millions, which is an important thing for an actor. The memory that I am particularly fond of is the reaction of the audience to the death of my character. I could have never imagined that so many people would take it so emotionally, and it meant a lot to me that the character I played was loved so dearly.
You are a permanent member of the company of Yugoslav Drama Theatre. What do you think about the taste of Belgradian audience?
– I think that every stage in Belgrade has its audience, you more or less know what you can see where. The Yugoslav Drama Theatre is a renowned theatre with over seventy years of history; it was home to greatest actors and directors and we, today, try to keep up in the same spirit. The audience that comes to Yugoslav Drama Theatre knows what it likes and what it wants to see, and I think they go home satisfied.
What sort of program do you like best – period, modern, classic?
– So far, I have had the least chance to play in contemporary pieces, although I am getting the impression that they are produced somewhat less often, too. There is a shortage of high-quality contemporary domestic texts. What I played the most, perhaps, is the classic literature, but I wouldn’t say this was some kind of specialisation for me. The important thing is the quality of the text – and whether it’s a drama, a comedy, a classic or something else… that’s not as important.
By: Anica Vasić