Sumeet Raghavan started his acting career on television twenty five years ago with small roles in serials. He is not just a talented actor but also a gifted singer. His singing ability came to the limelight after he won a reality singing show Say Shaava Shaava.
Better known as Dr. Sahil of Sarabhai v/s Sarabhai Sumeet is returning to the small screen with a new sitcom Paani Puri on Star One.
On the eve of the launch of his show Sumeet talks about Paani Puri, his kids, his dreams and much more, exclusively on Tellychakkar.
From a sophisticated doctor to a casual, clumsy, struggling actor. There is a huge contradiction in the character you played in Sarabhai v/s Sarabhai and the one you will be playing in Paani Puri. Was it your initiative?
No, it wasn’t my idea but had this role not been different from Sarabhai.., I wouldn’t have taken it up. I was offered Kaate Ki Takkar on Sony which will follow Comedy Circus 2 but opted out. Before I could get committed to some other project, the production house of Paani Puri roped me for this show. I accepted to do this role because I love to do comedy and I liked my character in this show.
Aren’t you tired of ‘playing’ a prefect husband?
I would love to show my devil side to the audience but I should get such a role. I think my face is such that I get offered only goody husband type of roles.
Viewers still remember your work in Sarabhai v/s Sarabhai. Do you fear expectations?
Yes, I do and to a great extent. I want to tell the audiences not to judge me from what I have done earlier. These constant comparisons between Sarabhai… and Paani Puri are scaring me.
Do you watch your friend and former co-star Rupali Ganguly in Zara Nachke Dikha?
Yes. I must tell you that she should quit acting and make a career in dancing. I met her yesterday on the sets of Zara... I was shooting at the same place for Paani Puri. I feel that she is a better dancer than an actor.
A talented singer or a renowned actor?
An actor. I am here to act. Though singing is close to my heart, acting is my priority. This was a choice that I made 15 – 16 years ago. Then, I had to choose between singing and acting. I chose acting.
I personally feel television is an easy medium. One hardly gets to play challenging roles on TV whereas singing is tough. Lot of riyaaz or practice is needed, so I chose the easy way out. But you never know. I might come up with an album and surprise every one. You never know what happens in the future.
You have faced a long lull in your career. Doesn’t this make you insecure?
You are right. Recently, one of my friends who is a banker quit her job and she was telling me about the uncertainty of jobs these days. I told her that you are talking about the uncertainty of your profession, you join acting and then you will know what uncertainty of work means. I was telling her what I have gone through in my career.
There was a lull in my career from 1992 to 1998. There wasn’t any work at all and I had to shift my focus to dubbing and singing to run my kitchen. At that time, there weren’t many channels and shows, so work in the television industry had dried out.
But nowadays newcomers have a lot of work to do.
Good for them. They have a benefit but I don’t have any problem with that. Let every body make money and do well.
Are you as good a husband in real life as you are in reel life?
I don’t know how my wife Chinmayee tolerates me. I am unromantic and stubborn husband with a fetish for cleanliness. I am extra particular about my house slippers. My wife and kids make sure that I find them in the right place. I am extremely grumpy.
Do your kids watch your shows?
My son Neerad (11 yrs) and daughter Deeya (8 yrs) love Sarabhai.. They are eagerly waiting to watch Paani Puri. They give me advice on the role that I should take up. They even scrutinise my work and my appearance. I ask them on what to wear before going for any event. They give me the best advice. My wife, on the other hand is biased towards me. She believes that I am the best actor and loves my work.
I want to do a film with Karan Johar. I like the kind of movies that he makes. He takes you away from reality to entertain you. That is the kind of entertainment I prefer. I would love to host a show. Direction is again something that I would like to do. I may direct anything, a play, a serial or a film. If at all I venture into direction, I don’t want to fall prey to circumstances and compromise on the quality of my work, like most directors on TV these days.
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