Ram Kapoor, best known as Jai Walia from the TV show, Kasamh Se on Zee TV, has graduated to Bollywood full time now.
For the actor, who made his big screen debut with Mira Nair’s Monsoon Wedding (2001), but turned to television after that, life has come full circle. And the critical acclaim he received for Karthik Calling Karthik and Udaan this year proves that. He’s been roped in for two big-budget flicks —Sriram Raghavan’s Agent Vinod and Sooraj Barjatya’s Love U Mr Kalakaar.
"Thanks to Karthik… and Udaan, I’ve been getting the right kind of roles from the right people. I think they have started accepting me as a character actor in a small way now."
Though he was being offered films throughout his time on TV, the roles didn’t excite him. "On Kasamh Se, I played the same character for four years. The role did a lot for me, but I decided I wouldn’t repeat myself and accept similar roles."
So when the show came to a grand end after a successful run, Kapoor was next seen on Jhhalak Dikhlaa Jaa, and then, as an anchor on Rakhi Ka Swayamvar and Rahul Dulhaniya Le Jayenge.
"My plan was to showcase different sides of my personality. In Jhhalak… I was the prankster and in the Swayamvar series, I was myself. And soon after, I got the roles in Karthik… and Udaan," he laughs.
The roles have been getting Kapoor great feedback too. "People have had such emotional reactions to Udaan that we can’t get the smiles off our faces," he says. "Even though I don’t know Javed Akhtar and Shabana Azmi personally, they called and spoke to me for 20 minutes about the film and my performance. I had a lump in my throat – it was the best call of my life!"
Now, the actor isn’t sure how much time he will be able to give to television, but he insists that he won’t "turn his back on TV".
"Television has done a lot for me and I can never stay away from it," he says. "But as of now, my dates for the next six months are booked, so I’m not even sure if I’ll be able to do the third season of the Swayamvar series. I hope I can manage both."