Exclusive! 'I wasn't looking towards a quintessential launch': Mohit Raina on his debut with Uri

Appearing in smaller roles, Mohit Raina gained overnight fame when he played the character of Lord Shiva on Television

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Exclusive! 'I wasn't looking towards a quintessential launch': Mohit Raina on his debut with Uri

Those who know what it feels to meet someone you have seen as a God, it would be a surreal moment. But eventually you do understand that the person you are considering God is also only human. Looking at Mohit Raina, who is tagged as Mahadev (Lord Shiva) of TV in his rawest form, is the reality check everybody who can only see him as Mahadev needs.

As an actor, even though Mohit is known as Mahadev, he proved his acting skills when he played a fighter in a popular TV show which was based on Battle of Saragarhi. Mohit is all set to explore Bollywood this time, in the role of a captain in Vicky Kaushal starrer Uri: The Surgical Strike. Directed by Aditya Dhar, the movie, also starring Yami Gautam and Paresh Rawal in pivotal roles, is based on real-life Uri attacks and has garnered positive response from audiences.

DNA caught up with the actor just before the release of URI to know about his journey, how Bollywood treats TV actors and his future. plans Here are some excerpts from the interview…

Ever since you played Mahadev, people perceive you just as the sweet and handsome God. Do you think Uri will be an image-changer in terms of people getting to see a newer side of you?

It's not a conscious decision. It just happened. But if I achieve this with that, then it would be an icing on the cake. It's not like I want to shed that burden or image. I want to carry that but at the same time people are very much aware that being an actor I will do different stuff and they cannot let me sit on the snow. Eventually, slowly things fade out and we accept the truth. With me also I'm hoping that would happen.

Why did you not wait for a lead role?

Times are changing. I was finding my path and wasn't looking towards a very quintessential launch kind-of a thing. I was more than happy making my own path. Even web being the newer digital platform, I want to utilize even that. I didn't want to be typical. This project wasn't planned at all. It was just that this movie wouldn't be made again. When I realized that, it was the only thing I thought about. By doing different stuffs, we now gain a certain kind of confidence. People realize your capacity and credibility. Vicky is the best example of that.

Yeah, and also Taapsee who just did a small role in Baby which got so noticed. I thought you had something like that on your mind...

I didn't know that. I knew when she said it on the roundtable. People are more receptive and more open to new people. They are very smart too and would reject things they don't like - be it on TV, digital or movies. First, they didn't have this option because they didn't have anything apart from sitting in theatres to watch a movie.

It has been quite an exciting year for TV actresses with quite a few of them making their Bollywood debut. Do you think it is time we see more TV actors also in film?

I think the TV actors should. Right now there's a demand for talent and talent will shine. Film industry is also receptive of giving chance to TV actors.

Was doing a Bollywood movie always on your list?

No. I just came here to act.

Being a TV star, does it take extra efforts into convincing people that you can also manage films with the same brilliance?

No I don't think so. There are only a couple of things you have to keep in mind. You have to start from zero and unlearn everything. You're on a different pitch altogether so you cannot go back on the pitch. You have to be flexible according to patterns and needs of director. It's not easy but it's achievable. You have to keep doing experiments and the time will come for you.

Are you open to mythological films too?

I don't think Bollywood has that.

There's news about Mahabharata, so they are venturing into it...

Oh yeah?

Yes, so if you get offered something like that, then are you open to doing it?

Yeah, why not? It would even be on a grand scale I'm sure.

So from now on, will the journey be only about films or are you going to balance between films, web shows and TV?

Right now there's no plan as such. I feel this is a good phase for a creative person to be in. You get experimental and try something new. I am trying to switch between digital and films right now. Let's see what happens after Uri.

What are your expectations after making the swtich from TV to movies?

Nothing magical. People used to like the work earlier also and I'm hoping they'll like it on the big screen too. I expect filmmakers to look at talent and realize that the medium should open up more for TV actors too.

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