Here are excerpts from the conversation:
How are you spending your time during the lockdown?
I am following guidelines given by our Prime Minister Narendra Modi. I am at home and spending time with my three-year-old kid and wife. I am reading books, gardening and also trying to write a script. I believe an actor should be able to create content for themselves but it is not that easy. I am trying but hats off to the writers because it is such a lonely process.
My career started slow. Newbies in the industry don’t get a lot of opportunities. I started when casting directors did not exist. But at this point, I am so used to the rush so this lockdown is reminding me of my beginning in the industry.
Can we say that the digital medium proved to be a boon for you?
You can say that. I started my career with Rajshri Productions’ film called Isi Life Mein (2010) but it did not do well. Later, I had films like Gurgoan, Kaalakandi and others but the web allowed me to play characters that I would have never done, which was exciting.
Your series Hum Tum and Them was also popular.
I really think Ekta ma’am promoted me through her company ALTBalaji. First, I was standing behind Nimrat Kaur and later, I starred in the series as a lead with Shweta Tiwari. Now, doing a feature film (which also stars Disha Patani) with her. But yes, it was good fun. I hope there is a second season (of Hum Tum and Them).
A character that changed your career?
Nikki Singh from Gurgaon. I really think it gave a push to my career.
How has the industry changed since your debut?
I think people are valuing acting more now. Earlier, it used to be about your background or your box office collection but now, people take an interest in you if you are a good actor.
Critical acclaim or commercial success?
At this point, I am hungry for commercial success but deep down, I love getting critically acclaimed because I want to be known as an actor.
What’s in store for you this year?
I worked on four web-series and four films in 2019. I have Mrs Chief Minister with Richa Chadha and Saurabh Shukla up for release this year. I have done a romantic chick-flick with Disha Patani. Another film has me along with Urvashi Rautela and Mukkabaaz fame Vineet Kumar Singh. It is a Tamil film remake. If I talk about web series, I have Flesh, Magic, Inside Edge 3, Illegal and there were a couple of more things I was supposed to do but everything has been put on hold for now.
Anything you can tell us about Inside Edge 3?
I am afraid I would not be able to say much but I had fun shooting for Inside Edge Season 3. It is a big canvas with a lot of actors on-board. I have also learnt to play cricket for the series.
What sort of projects do you want to be part of?
I want to do a period film because I feel it is quite challenging. Also, I want to be a part of a biopic because you can measure how close you were to the character. I would love to play Kishore Kumar. He is very fascinating. I know there were rumours that a big star was supposed to star but I hope I get it (smiles).
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