Neil Bhoopalam is looking forward to watching the trailer of his debut fiction show 24 that is releasing today in a theatre, a first for a TV show. Says Neil, “The serial has also been shot like a film.
This sort of a project on this medium is quite experimental and I hope it does well.” The actor was already doing a film Ungli, scripted by Rensil D’Silva who is penning the desi version of the international show when he got the offer. With Anil Kapoor starring in it and Abhinav Kashyap directing it, Neil couldn’t have asked for more.
Plus, he is playing the Indian counterpart of David Palmar, the Presidential candidate in the US series, albeit with a slight change — Neil plays an aspiring Prime Minister Aditya Singhania.
In the original series, David’s role is the second most prominent character after Jack Bauer whose Indian counterpart Jai Singh Rathod is being played by Anil. Was that what excited Neil? “Not really.
Unless I start shooting for the show I am unsure and don’t get excited,” he says wryly. Though the actor was familiar with the show, he resisted watching it after he signed it. “I didn’t want to get influenced by it,” says Neil, who in the serial is shown to be a man of principles.
Now that he is shooting for it and has canned scenes with Anil, Neil is quite gung-ho. “We did a lot of reading, rehearsals and pre-prep for the serial. Though Anil is a senior actor, he is so hard-working. In the serial our characters meet only half-way through the first season,” informs Neil.
Basically a theatre actor — he is currently doing two plays, Hamlet The Crown Prince and Voices, Neil who also hosted a TV show earlier came into the limelight with Bejoy Nambiar’s Shaitan.
After that he did a small but significant role in No One Killed Jessica. Ask him whether he is consciously looking for unconventional fare and Neil says that he loves being part of new-age cinema.
“The audience today is exposed to new things and is far more aware and accepting, though it’s a slow process. Also, since I am not from a film background and don’t have anyone to give me advice it’s best to be a part of experimental cinema,” he reasons.