To say that 2020 proved to be a game changer for Darshan Kumaar won’t be wrong. Even while struggling with the pandemic, the actor says things took a satisfying turn for him professionally. His web shows Avrodh: The Seige Within, and both seasons of Aashram, garnered a positive response.
Grateful for the love he got from audiences, the actor says, “OTT as a medium has emerged and how! Whenever I step out even with a mask and safety goggles on, people recognise me as Ujagar Singh (from Aashram) the moment I say something. Recently, someone stopped me on the road and asked me about its third season.”
Kumar feels the web medium has opened up new horizons not just for actors, but also for the kind of stories people want to tell, and their presentation.
“Now, the audiences have so much new, and interesting content from across the world to enjoy on the web. As far as actors and creators are concerned, everyone gets equal footing here,” explains the actor, who will next be seen in second season of The Family Man, third season of Aashram, and two films — Toofan, and an untitled suspense thriller.
Kumar had done cameos in Mujhe Kuch Kehna Hai (2001) and Tere Naam (2003) before he bagged a lead part in Mary Kom (2014) as Priyanka Chopra onscreen husband. But since then, he has done a handful of films and that too, mostly supporting parts.
“After Mary Kom, I got similar roles of husbands, boy-next-door etc. People here tend to classify you into certain characters,” he reasons, adding that even after Aashram, he has been offered “cop characters in at least 50 films”.
Kumar says for the last 13-14 years that he has been doing theatre under actor Naseeruddin Shah, there’s one thing he has learnt from him. “That one needs to have patience. Even when I did TV, I did good shows like Baba Aiso Varr Dhoondo and Mahadev. Same goes for OTT. I’ve always been choosy. So, when lead roles don’t come your way you get disappointed, but you don’t lose hope and work harder everyday and keep proving yourself for Aashrams and Avrodhs to happen to you,” he says, admitting that Bollywood is a “tough nut to crack, more so for outsiders”.
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Author tweets @Shreya_MJ