Wednesday, August 22, 2007
The Indian television industry may have grown bigger over the years but the magic of the big screen still hovers over the heads of telly actors. Even after getting good money and security in the television industry, TV stars have always been attracted more towards celluloid. In the past, the badshah of Bollywood Shahrukh Khan had shifted his base from television to films with great success followed by Irfan Khan and Kay Kay Menon and now the current breed of TV stars like Rohit Roy, Manoj Bohra, Roshni Chopra and Kulraj Randhawa seem to be following the badshah's foot steps.
"The bottom line is I always wanted to do cinema. I decided for the shift because I thought television trained me a lot and it was a great time to shift. I had done almost everything on television from acting to hosting and even producing daily soaps," says Rohit Roy. Rohit feels that working in television is too hectic and time consuming. "It takes a lot of time and you are hooked for 25 days a month after which you are hardly left with any time for other spheres," he adds. He however refused to comment further, may be because he feels he is sort of 'been there and done that,' while it won't be an understatement to call the rest of the hopefuls novices.
We too understand that Rohit has had a successful career graph over the years and after 'Shoot out at Lokhandwala' and his close association with director Sanjay Gupta; he can afford to think only about films. But what about the other actors who have just started their stint in television and are already dreaming of working in films? Aren't they aware of the risk and insecurities involved with the film industry? Young actor Manoj Bohra reportedly has signed a film and wants to etch out a career in Bollywood and because of this very reason he quit his long running serial Kasauti Zindagi Kay.
"Movies bring out the best in an actor. You have time in hand to experiment and play with your character. It all depends on luck. If you don't click there, you can always fall back on television," he says.
On the contrary the vamp of 'Kasamh Se', Roshni Chopra wants to play a safe game. She doesn't really want to compromise her television career for films. "Like every actor even I want to do cinema. Here you a get a chance to experiment, thanks to the variety of roles, cinema has to offer. But I will never do that at the cost of commitment. I mean if I am working in a serial and I get a call for a movie I won't rattle off for the film. I value commitments and I am aware of the ethics of the professional world," admits the actress.
We had learnt that even Roshni was recently offered a role in a big banner film. "Yes, I had got an offer but the dates clashed with one of my serials, so I had to drop the idea. It was disheartening but I think when something has to happen it will happen. As far as my struggle is concerned I have been fortunate enough to escape from struggle," avers Roshni. Even her 'Kasamh Se' co star Prachi Desai is said to have similar ambitions and is probably been backed greatly by Balaji Czarina Ekta Kapoor to fulfill the same.
Comedians like Sunil Pal have not done hidden their filmi aspirations either. “After 'Bombay to Goa" I have got lots of offers, but I am only doing selected work. With God"s grace I guess I will soon get to do a lead role. Even in 'Bombay to Goa", I had an integral part. My next film will be 'Balle Balle". I don't want to do lots of films, I will be happy doing just one film, but will make sure I do it with dedication. I will shift to films completely and never blindly, only when the roles given in film will be better than in television," he says.
He says that a platform helps. “I have struggled for 10 years but won"t deny after you get a platform, u automatically get exposure and you don't have to sit jobless. 'The Great Indian Laughter Challenge" provided me with such exposure. Though I must admit that pay for amateurs is less in films as compared to TV," adds Pal.
It's not just Bollywood, actors are even ready to sacrifice their television career for other regional films. There is a buzz that even though Rajshri Thakur has got everything she could ask for from 'Saat Phere', she still has filmi aspirations. She is getting offers, albeit from regional film makers. "I was being offered a Punjabi movie. But then I have to weigh a lot of things before taking something up. Since I am totally into 'Saat Phere', things depend on a lot of factors," says the actress.
Kulraj Randhawa of 'Kareena Kareena' fame who had worked in a Punjabi film is getting offers from a host of South film makers. "Even established actresses of Bollywood regularly work in the South industry which is much more organized than Bollywood. I am happy that I am being flooded with offers from the southern industry," says Kulraj. Also was money a big factor? There are rumours that she demanded Rs 25 lakh for a Telegu movie. "Looks like the rumour mills are working overtime. I maintain that I only ask for what I deserve," claims the chirpy actress.
Listening to these young guns of television, all seem to work in movies for creative satisfaction. But doesn't money too play a big part in their vision? We all know that Bollywood biggies like Shahrukh Khan and Amitabh Bachchan are some of the highest tax payers of the country whereas none of the television actors even come near to them. When inquired about the money issue, most of these television actors have only two words to say, "No comments".
Well, we surely have a comment to make on their no comments issue. With so many young faces making their debut in television everyday, people remember and accept only those who regularly appear on their TV sets. We all are aware of the fate of veteran actors like Sachin Khedekar, Harsh Chhaya, Renuka Shahane and even the likes of Nausheen Ali Sardar and Amarr Upadhyay who after trying their luck in films have almost disappeared from the television industry. We can just wish that the same doesn't happen with these young breed of over enthusiastic actors!