Colors’ show Udann, which dealt with the subject of bonded labour, recently witnessed a generation leap. Tanya Sharma and Gaurav Sareen are now seen playing the young leads, while Toral Rasputra has taken charge as the new Chakor. Udann is currently focusing on the strained relationship between Chakor and her daughter Anjor (Tanya).
Amritsar-born Gaurav plays Anjor’s love interest Sameer in the serial. The 22-year-old recently sat down with indianexpress.com for an exclusive chat on his latest project, his sudden ousting from Krishna Chali London and his desire to become a hero.
Here are excerpts from the conversation:
How has been your experience in Udann so far?
It has been going really well. It is a popular show and has been running for close to five years now. I remember I was in school when Udann used to air with the little kid. My parents loved watching it. The fans have also been enjoying my new character. It is a well-established show. And post the leap, I know people have a lot of expectations from us. I hope we match up to it.
What’s your personal take on shows taking a leap?
I think it really helps bring a fresh new perspective to the story. For example, Udann’s audience is also growing. So to cater to them, the storyline is focusing on the new generation in a different setting. I really feel it helps fans stay connected to the show.
You started at a very young age, what were the challenges you faced in your struggling days?
I clearly remember when I moved to Mumbai, people said the industry worked through contacts. Also one has to make a good portfolio and work on their body. After spending a lot of time doing that, I realised that at the end of the day, it’s only your talent that will take you ahead. I did try my hands at ad shoots for a while and then bagged Ek Deewana Tha, where I played the brother to the female lead. I hardly had any dialogues in the show (laughs). And then life changed when I cracked the audition for Krishna Chali London.
But that first big role didn’t go as you must have expected. Your character was killed off overnight. Was it difficult to deal with that?
Honestly, I am someone who can move on very swiftly. I am a neutral person and it wasn’t really difficult. But yes, I still miss the character of Radhe. It might sound weird and foolish but sometimes at nights, when I think about Radhe, I end up crying. It was a really special role for me.
As newcomers, most dream of making it big in Bollywood. Was TV an alternative choice for you?
I believe in destiny and karma. I just work hard, rest I leave it on the almighty. Television is a very strong medium. Right now, I want to at least play a role for a year to grow as an actor. That’s the only way to explore and experience variation and versatility. Post that, if movies are to happen, they will, someday.
How have your parents been reacting to your success?
They are over the moon. I have always been intrigued by the term ‘hero’. I have wanted to be one all my life. My dad also wanted to see his son as a hero, being hailed in the neighbourhood, but as an IPS officer. So I told him to let me walk on my own path and become a hero. And now, it’s not just the neighbours but the entire world that knows me (smiles).
Lastly, your resemblance to Ayushmann Khurrana also created a lot of buzz. What’s your take on that?
I am fine with that. It is the public’s opinion after all. I remember I met Aparshakti Khurana for an event and we started talking. He told me I resembled ‘Ayush bhai’ and that he had even shared my videos with him. I was clueless, who he was referring too until I saw Ayushmann Khurrana on his phone’s contact. I didn’t know they were brothers. Today, I am really good friends with Aparshakti. He tells me that I can play the role of a younger Ayushmann in one of his films.