When every other actor is working out to show off six-pack or eight-pack abs, Ranvir Shorey has done just the opposite. He stopped working out, feasted on ice creams and helped himself to mugs of beer to pile on 15kgs for a film. "I was muscular but the role demanded that I look just fat. Rajat (Kapoor) asked me to stop exercising and put on as much weight as I can in a year," says Ranvir.

The film, tentatively titled Fatso, was screened last weekend at the South Asian Film Festival in New York. It's the second time Ranvir is being directed by Rajat Kapoor, after Mithya. The two have worked together in plays and films (including Bheja Fry) and Ranvir admits Rajat brings out the best in him. "We share the same sensibilities; both of us believe in films rooted in reality. I trust him unconditionally and he, in return, trusts me to do my best."

Fatso is a story about five friends and their relationships. The Indian release is being worked out with a new title. Looking back, Ranvir says, "The eating part was good. And I love ice creams and beer. In between I had other film commitments and I had to complete them when I was still in shape. When I started bloating, my friends wondered what the hell was happening to me. My blood pressure shot up and my breathing got heavier. I didn't feel energetic and had acidity. Trust me, it didn't feel great to be unfit."

Once he completed Fatso, the onus was on him to lose the excess baggage. "Losing the flab was tough. I had to cut down on carbs and get back to workouts. I am practicing Kalaripayattu, swimming and doing aerobic exercises these days. I am almost back to normal but for my round stomach. I think it will take a year," he laughs. He is happy with Fatso though. "The film and my role have shaped up well."

Next, he will be seen with Vinay Pathak in a comic thriller where the two play cops. Ranvir does a balancing act between mainstream films like Singh is Kinng and Do Knot Disturb and films for a niche audience like Bheja Fry and Mithya. "As an actor, I am here to be hired for work. I cannot sit at home because there are very few projects that I love to do. I take up some films for money and some for the love of cinema. I was part of Do Knot Disturb because I had always wanted to work with David Dhawan," he reasons.

Bollywood buzz has it that he is set to tie the knot with Konkona Sen in December. He refuses to bite the bait and clams up with a "no comments."