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Hansal Mehta is a dream director, says Hemant Kher

Hemant Kher, who has played a pivotal role in Hansal Mehta’s directorial web series ‘Scam 1992’, says the filmmaker is a dream director for any actor who wants to explore.

In a conversation with Cineoshin, Hemant who has various feathers in his hat, said it was a great experience to work with Hansal Mehta.

“He is a dream director for any actor who likes to explore and wants to create a character in his own. He gives lot of freedom and at the same time he never allows you to slip out of your character,” he said.

On how did ‘Scam 1992’ happened to him, Hemant said,”I was busy with my Acting coaching and writing work and in the mid of 2018 I got a call from Mukesh Chhabra casting company. They knew me and they tested me a few times before too. They auditioned me for Ashwin’s character and they liked it, hence presented me along with few other options to Hansal Mehta. He did few improvisation with me and Pratik and mostly our family characters. After that I forgot about it. After almost a year I received a call from StudioNext and they offered me the role. I took it up happily.”

Talking about the character he is portraying, Hemant said,”I am playing Harshad Mehta’s elder brother. The one who tries to keep a check on Harshad and always supports him in all his endeavours despite of possible dangers and risk. My character is who takes all the winds for Harshad. Ultimately Ashwin, my character teaches himself law and fights all the cases they were involved in. He is alive and he is still fighting.”

About the preparation of his character, Hemant said,”Mostly going through scripts again and again, understanding how share market functions. As far as my character is concerned there is very little material available about him so I surrendered myself to the director and relied on my imagination.”

Hemant, who has explored mediums like theatre, television, and movies as writer and creative director, says he has always been an actor.

“I graduated from NSD as an actor and I came to Mumbai. I landed up in some cameos in serials and worked in a feature film also but things were very rough, nothing was clicking. And suddenly I was offered a non-fictional show to write for Zee Tv. I took it up. I was a casual writer but this opportunity made me a professional writer. I worked really hard and then never looked behind. I wrote or did creative direction or directed almost the big shows of Indian television. One of those shows was ‘India’s Best Dramebaaz’ (kids show), from where on I started training actors for television and films. I did what I got and then I got the opportunity as an actor for Scam 1992. I grabbed it and worked hard to give my best,” says Hemant.

The National School Of Drama (NSD) alumni, Hemant has more than 16 years of experience of coaching and providing companionship to aspiring and professional actors.

When asked if he feels theatre has lost it’s audience these days, with the emergence of the OTT platforms, Hemant said,”No. I don’t feel so because theatre is here since thousands of years and it is evolving. It will keep evolving till there are humans on this planet. Theatre is more about live human interactions and you can’t let that go!!”

“So definitely no medium can take away theatre audience. There will be new plays and there will be new audiences always! As far as classics are concerned, yes I feel people are not giving lot of attention to them. To keep the classic alive one has to keep experimenting with it!! I hope the millennial generation will find some excitement into it and they will do it,” he said.

On which directors he wishes to work with in future, Hemant said,”Ohh. All of them. Definitely again and again with Hansal sir and if I have to name a few – Anurag Kashyap, Raj Kumar Hirani, Sudhir Mishra, Zoya Akhtar, Raj and DK, Mani Ratnam, Meghna Gulzar, Rohit Shetty, Anubhav Sinha, Anurag Basu, Jai Mehta and all the new age director.The list could go on, I also really want to work with, if I dare to say, Christopher Nolan and Bong Joon-Ho.”

Hemant also said that he is Waiting for something great to come across in the future. “There are one or two offers but nothing prominent! I am sure God will has great plans for me,” he added.

Hemant has conducted workshops at various places around India including ‘Result theory of Acting’ workshop at Mukesh Chhabra Casting Company. He has also provided his services to various acting based shows like “India’s Best Dramebaaz” and “India’s Best Cinestar Ki Khoj” for Zee TV.

He played a very important role in making movies like “Mitron’ and ‘Notebook’ as official ‘Acting Coach’. He has provided his personal assistance to many actors and celebrities like Kritika Kamra, Jackky Bhagnani, Zaheer Iqbal, Pranutan Bahal, Prateek Gandhi, Zoa Moorani, Karishma Sharma, Amal Malik, Javed Ali, Chef Vikas Khanna and many more.

Directed by Hansal Mehta, ‘Scam 1992’ is about the major scandals that shook India and are remembered as some of the most notorious crimes of the country. Set in 1980’s and 90’s Bombay, ‘Scam 1992’ follows the life of Harshad Mehta – the infamous “Bachchan of BSE”.

The show which is currently streaming on Sony Liv, has received 9.6 ratings on IMDb.Starring Pratik Gandhi (lead character- Harshad Mehta), Anjali Barot, Sharib Hashmi, Shreya Dhanwanthary, Hemant Kher and Nikhil Dwivedi, the series premiered on SonyLIV on October 9.

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