Bollywood sets sight on Bihar Bal Bhawan actors | patna | Hindustan Times
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Bollywood sets sight on Bihar Bal Bhawan actors

Kilkari, established by the Bihar government’s education department in 2008 to recognise the abilities of under privileged kids and develop their talent, has come a long way, giving platforms to children hailing from families of below poverty line

patna Updated: Feb 25, 2018 18:24 IST
Reena Sopam
Reena Sopam
Hindustan Times, Patna

Budding actors of Kilkari, Bihar Bal Bhawan, have slowly, but steadily, started to draw the attention of Bollywood filmmakers.

Since the appearance of five of them in famed director Ketan Mehta’s 2015 biographical feature Manjhi: The Mountain Man, the children at the organisation, which is engaged in the all-round developmental grooming of kids aged 8-16, are involved with at least two more film projects — a biopic on mathematician Anand Kumar, Super 30, with Hrithik Roshan at the helm, and Devashish Makhija’s Manoj Bajpayee-starrer Bhonsle.

Kilkari, established by the Bihar government’s education department in 2008 to recognise the abilities of under privileged kids and develop their talent, has come a long way, giving platforms to children hailing from families of below poverty line.

Before they got to act alongside the likes of Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Radhika Apte and Bajpayee, the children have been learning theatre and accumulating tips on acting at Bal Bhawan’s Saidpur unit.

“While they already had the experience of acting on the stage, facing camera was a new thing for them. But with their talent and training, they impressed the casting director and got selected for Manjhi,” said Kilkari’s director, Jyoti Parihar.

Anita Kumari, the Bal Bhawan programme coordinator, said they moved on from theatre to start arranging workshops on cinema for these young actors. “It has benefited them very much,” she said, adding that many of them impressed the casting directors working for Makhija and Vikas Bahl.

Virat, 11, a Kilkari actor from Kankarbagh area in Patna and son of a farmer from Begusarai district, is one of the child actors essaying the role of ‘a Bihari boy’ in Bhonsle. He said more than three dozen children had come for the audition in Patna. “The final round was held in Mumbai. After the selection, I was given a month-long training and then did shooting for 12 days with actors like Manoj Bajpayee,” he said.

Ravibhushan Mukul, the theatre trainer, said it was great to see these children on the big screen. “When they had joined (Kilkari), many appeared meek and hesitant. Now see the transformation in them. Wide exposure has made them very confident and bold,” he said, adding that this is what the Bal Bhawan intends to achieve.

First Published: Feb 25, 2018 18:24 IST