TV actors Ayushmann Khurana and Yami Gautam made a successful transition from small screen to big with the unusual Vicky Donor, so did Rajeev Khandelwal, who chose the off-beat Aamir to make his film debut and is currently filming for a thriller Table No.21. Prachi Desai quit TV to do Rock On!! and was last seen in Bol Bachchan. Pulkit Samrat recently forayed into films with Bittoo Boss, and soon several small-screen stars like Sushant Singh Rajput, Barun Sobti, Amit Sadh and Sara Khan are poised to make the big shift.
While TV actors doing films is not new — Shah Rukh Khan was the first one to make the switch — the scope for success has definitely increased thanks to the advent of multiplex and small-budget movies. Directors are open to casting TV actors, not only for their experimental films, but also regular commercial fare. Says Rajkumar Gupta, who cast Rajeev in Aamir, “There is potential for good TV actors in films. One of the main reasons is the different kind of cinema being made in varied genres. Even the audience is receptive to newer ideas.”
Not only first-timers, even those actors who tried their luck in films and failed are getting a second chance. Ronit Roy, who had turned to TV after a disappointing film career is back on the big screen with the critically acclaimed Udaan, which had him in a pivotal role along with another TV actor Ram Kapoor. Karanvir Bohra, after an inconsequential film will soon be seen playing the lead alongside Shreyas Talpade in Chemistry. “The change was inevitable,” says Karanvir adding that as most of the A-list actors want to work with top banners, it leaves a huge scope for upcoming talent. “Who knows, among this talent will be the new SRK,” he smiles.
Sushant Singh Rajput, who will debut with Kai Po Che, feels it’s got to do with the changing structure of the industry. “Filmmakers have taken the risk with newcomers and have succeeded with good content. Not just TV or theatre, even if you do nukkad natak and are a good enough actor, this is the time when filmmakers will welcome you with enthusiasm,” he says.
Agrees trade analyst Taran Adarsh, adding that TV is a great platform for actors. “They are so used to doing diverse roles, a couple of them even path-breaking ones. Not only is there so much talent out there, so many movies are being made that they definitely have a chance of making it big now,” he maintains.
Rajeev points out that the change could have happened much earlier if someone had the conviction of a Raj Kumar or Shoojit Sircar. “Aamir broke new grounds and brought a change. So has Vicky Donor. I am sure many will want to emulate their
success now, as it is tried and tested.”