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83 actor Jatin Sarna: Auditioned for Madan Lal’s part but glad that I played Yashpal Sharma

Actor Jatin Sarna talks about playing Yashpal Sharma in Kabir Khan's 83 and how he bagged the role. He also opens up about the connection that he feels with the late cricketer.

Written by Sana Farzeen | Mumbai |
December 24, 2021 3:33:54 pm
yashpal sharma, 83 film, jatin sarnaJatin Sarna plays Yashpal Sharma in Kabir Khan's 83. (Photo: Jatin Sarna/Instagram)

India is known to have two popular passions: Bollywood and cricket. Merging the two worlds, Kabir Khan’s 83 has hit cinema halls today. The film chronicles the Indian cricket team’s victory at the 1983 Cricket World Cup. While Ranveer Singh has been winning praise for his portrayal of Kapil Dev, every actor playing ‘Kapil’s Devils’ has managed to impress critics not just with their physical similarities, but also their playing style. As each actor waits to get feedback from the cricketers on their performance, Jatin Sarna, who plays Yashpal Sharma in 83, is sad that the batsman passed away earlier this year.

Sharing that he was heartbroken when he heard the news of Yashpal’s demise, Jatin said, “I was shattered in every sense and not because I was playing him. I have seen the team and the unity that they possess. I felt hurt that one among them was gone. Then of course the world lost an ace cricketer. And in the end, I was also upset that I wanted him to see the film with me. Till now, I am yet to come to terms with his death. I recently met his family and we were all in tears while talking about him. It was so emotional for all of us. We are missing him a lot and I am glad people will watch the film to know about his contribution to Indian cricket.”

Though Jatin Sarna met Yashpal Sharma only twice in his life, the cricketer still managed to leave an impact on him. His meetings also made him realise why he was chosen for the role. He shared, “I met him during our Dharamshala camp and then just before leaving for London. He also taught me the techniques. However, what I realised was how we both are disciplined, dedicated and have zeal. We both are also self-made men and I could relate to him in so many ways. I have kept those meetings close to my heart as it helps me connect with him deeply.”

 

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A post shared by Jatin Sarna (@thejatinsarna)

 

 

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A post shared by Jatin Sarna (@thejatinsarna)

 

Talking about his ‘long journey’ with 83, the actor shared that he was looking for work when he turned up at Mukesh Chhabra’s office. There he met his assistant who clicked his photo telling him that they were working on a project based on the World Cup win. However, more than a year passed and he didn’t hear from them. In the middle of this, Sacred Games released and Jatin earned much praise for his performance as the gangster Bunty.

When he was back at Mukesh’s office for another shoot, he saw a whole room was dedicated to casting with pictures of original cricketers put up on the walls. “I told him to get me a role in the film but he refused, saying that the makers wanted some known faces. I was like Sacred Games release hogayi hai, ab main bhi known hu. He said he will get back but I didn’t get a call for the next few months,” shared Jatin.

And then in May 2018, he got a call to audition for Madan Lal. Well-prepped with his bowling style and even a speech ready, Jatin said he gave a good audition but again there was no call. “In December, they called me and said I have been shortlisted to play Yashpal Sharma. I honestly didn’t know much about him. I checked the final’s scorecard and saw he had just scored 11 runs. I was sceptical but still went for the audition and was finalised the next day. I was told either I can read the script or meet Kabir Khan directly. I chose the script. I didn’t want to meet Kabir and say no to his film. And once I started reading, I was amazed and went through a hell lot of emotions,” he said.

 

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A post shared by Jatin Sarna (@thejatinsarna)

 

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Jatin Sarna (@thejatinsarna)

 

Jatin added that Kabir told him that he shouldn’t feel it’s just a Ranveer Singh film. The actor then started training and after eight to nine months, they started to shoot. “It has been a roller coaster ride and I feel so lucky that I was chosen for this part. I also feel proud and honoured that after watching this film, people will remember the contribution of Yashpal sir. He actually laid the foundation of the winning spree after he scored 89 against the giant West Indies in the first match. Also, the innings in the semifinal is worth remembering.”

Asked to pick his favourite casting, Jatin shared. “Honestly, everyone has done a fabulous job. Obviously, if you leave aside Ranveer as Kapil, I think Harrdy Sandhu as Madan Lal and Nishant Dahiya as Roger Binny are my favourites. They have done such a great job and I don’t think there could have been better casting for this role.”

 

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A post shared by Jatin Sarna (@thejatinsarna)

83 also stars Deepika Padukone, Saqib Saleem, Tahir Raj Bhasin, Ammy Virk, Adinath Kothare, Chirag Patil, Pankaj Tripathi among others.

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