September 10, 2015

Salman Khan is very focused as an actor: Sharad Kelkar

Popular actor Sharad Kelkar will be seen essaying the character of Raghav Sinha who works with the Special Unit of Crime Branch. He has such a sharp mind, observation and deduction skills that he can read a person even before they have completed speaking a sentence. Raghav has a photographic memory that makes him solve the most complex of cases.

&TV’s Agent Raghav – Crime Branch is a fast paced crime-mystery thriller where the protagonist Raghav Sinha, a Police Officer working for the Crime Branch of C.B.I solves intense homicidal and criminal cases. What is unique about Raghav is the fact that he uses techniques of deduction and observation to solve the case at hand. With his sharp mind and photographic memory he solves the most complex of cases that may seem hard to understand. The show premieres on September 5th and will be seen every Saturday and Sunday at 9.00 pm on &TV.

What kept you away from Television?
If you have followed my career graph, you will understand that I am a restless soul. I am always in pursuit of something different and intriguing. So, instead of doing the same roles over and over again I decided to wait and take it slow. Then films such as Lai Bhaari and Ram Leela came along and they kept me occupied so I couldn’t dedicate the kind of time television demands. Most of the TV offers I was getting clashed with my film assignments so I had to let go of a few shows as well.

What is so unique about "Agent Raghav" that made you say yes to this show?
Both - the premise of the show and my character. The protagonist Raghav Sinha doesn’t use his muscle but brain to solve cases. He uses observation, deduction, and sharp intuitions to solve the most complex crime cases. He is smart, stylish, and his weapon is words not guns. Such a character hasn’t been explored on Indian television before. Also, it’s a crime thriller and I haven’t dabbled in this genre yet.

How far it is true that your character is inspired by that of Akshay Kumar in "Bhool Bhulaiyaa"?

I wouldn’t say that the character is inspired by the one in Bhool Bhulaiya but there’s a striking similarity. Like Akshay’s character, my character in the show also relies on facts and focuses more on how a human mind functions. Psychiatry probably is the only common link between the two characters. Akshay Kumar’s character was more flamboyant and comical but Raghav is very serious when it comes to his job.

What is your opinion on crime shows that are there on television today?
So far crime shows – except for maybe Karamchand and Byomkesh Bakshi - have used brawn more than brains to crack cases. More importance is given to action rather than mind skills. This is where Agent Raghav is different.

Television has come a long way what changes have you found on TV?
The content is a lot more diverse than before. Earlier it was just soap operas that were being made and watched but now there is so much that audiences can choose from. There are channels such as &TV that cater to a more progressive mindset of audience.

You would be seen in "Hero" how did the film happen? Tell us about your role.
I had auditioned for the role and Nikhil Advani really liked my work and the look tests, the rest is history.  But I am happy about the fact that I have a pivotal role in the film that was played by Sanjeev Kumar in the original film.

How was the experience of working with newcomers Sooraj Pancholi and Athiya Shetty?
Sooraj Pancholi and Athiya Shetty are both debuting with the film but are so hard working. They are as dedicated as seasoned actors. I have hardly seen such focus and sincerity in the youth of today. It was really great working with them and they are both full of energy and fun too.

"Hero" is being produced by Salman Khan and he did a cameo in "Lai Bhaari" how was the experience of working with him? What things you learnt from him as an actor and as a person?
Salman Khan is really such an inspiration to work with. Working with him on Lai Bhaari was such an honour and I was really impressed with how well he can speak Marathi. He is very focused as an actor, which is what I learnt from him. Even if it was a cameo he gave it his 100% like a major role. I think that’s what I learnt from him. The length of a role doesn’t matter, you need to be as sincere for every role.

You made a mark for yourself in "Ram Leela" what benefits did you receive in terms of film offers after this project?
A good role and film always makes a huge difference in the kind of projects you are offered later. Ram Leela has opened a lot of avenues in Bollywood for me. I got Hero after Ram Leela so the makers must have liked my role in the film to be offered such a big role in a big production.

Tell us about your upcoming film projects.
“Hero” releases in the second week of September. After that I have a guest appearance in a Marathi film A Paying Ghost, which is based on a Marathi novel V P Kale. I have another interesting Marathi project in which I play the politician Gopinath Munde’s role; that’s one of the most challenging one I have done so far – to get his mannerisms and the way he spoke such brilliant Marathi right.

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