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Wednesday, Sep 18, 2019

I jumped at the role of Dr Lagoo: Sumeet Raghavan

Sumeet Raghavan reminisces meeting veteran Dr Shriram Lagoo; adds it was ‘magical’ to hear him talk about the past

regional-movies Updated: Oct 27, 2018 14:34 IST
Anjali Shetty
Anjali Shetty
Hindustan Times, Pune
Actor Sumeet Raghavan will be seen as Dr Shriram Lagoo in Abhijeet Deshpande’s Ani...Dr Kashinath Ghanekar
Actor Sumeet Raghavan will be seen as Dr Shriram Lagoo in Abhijeet Deshpande’s Ani...Dr Kashinath Ghanekar(Rahul Raut/HT PHOTO)

When debutant director Abhijeet Deshpande approached Sumeet Raghavan for a role in the film, Ani…Dr Kashinath Ghanekar, Sumeet read the script but politely refused. Sumeet congratulated Abhijeet on the great choice of Subodh Bhave, and mentioned that maybe next time they could work together. However, Nikhil Sane called up Sumeet and shared another opportunity. “When Nikhil called, he said, ‘We have another role, and we want you to do it. You don’t have a choice’. It was the role of Dr Shriram Lagoo, and I jumped at it,” says the Bucket List actor.

Even though the character has fewer scenes in the film, Sumeet is unfazed. “For me, the length of the role never matters. It is the essence of the role that is of prime importance. When Abhijeet narrated the role to me, I was floored,” he says.

The team conducted dress rehearsals, where Vikram Gaikwad worked on the look based on reference images and designer Nachiket Barve styled the outfits. “When I put on the lens and looked into the camera with the final look, that is when I thought to myself, ‘Half the battle is won’,” says Sumeet, adding, “Getting under the skin of the character is one thing, but looking like him or getting the appearance right is also important.”

Last year, in the same month, Sumeet was shooting in Sangli for the film and he thought of paying a visit to Dr Lagoo. Sumeet recalls, “I called up Deepatai (Dr Lagoo’s wife) and she very graciously asked me to come over and meet him. It was a very cute meeting, as Dr Lagoo first thought I was there to offer him a role. We then explained to him that I will be playing himself on screen. He was happy. I did not meet him to study him or his mannerism as the Dr Lagoo I am playing is from a completely different era. It was more of getting to meet the legend and spend time with him.”

Sumeet further adds, “Dr Lagoo’s eyes sparkled when he mentioned the era of 1955 to 1975. He seemed to remember everything about that time. It was magical to hear him talk like it had happened just yesterday. He was able to recollect several details and it was great to hear him talk about that time.”

First Published: Oct 27, 2018 14:32 IST