“I have been hugely inspired by Manoj Bajpayee’s journey” – Mohit Daga – Planet Bollywood
In a career spanning more than fifteen years, actor Mohit Daga has played several memorable roles on television. The actor is currently essaying one of the lead parts in &TV’s ‘Doosari Maa’. ‘Love Story’, ‘Left Right Left’, ‘Bairi Piya’, ‘Aap Ke Aa Jaane Se’, ‘Maddam Sir’ and ‘Tera Yaar Hoon Main’ are some of the popular TV shows he has worked in.
In this exclusive interview, the actor talks about shooting in Jaipur, eventful journey as an actor, the instability associated with this profession, the desire to do films and more.
How has been your experience of working on ‘Doosari Maa’?
I have been fortunate enough to get the opportunity to play powerful characters throughout my career. I am playing a parallel lead in ‘Doosari Maa’. When you get to play one of the leads, you do feel a sense of responsibility as you will be one of those actors who will be driving the show forward. The show has also helped me make a comeback in the industry.
The show is being shot in Jaipur. Since most TV shows are shot in Mumbai, this must have been a different experience.
Yes! The show will be shot entirely in Jaipur. Zee Studio is based in Jaipur and the set has been erected there. Sometimes, you have to shoot in some difficult locations and that makes the entire process even more challenging. At the same time, when you shoot in a beautiful city like Jaipur, you feel a sense of gratitude. The experience of shooting for this show has been very different. Whenever I get a break, I explore the city and the areas surrounding it. Recently, I shot for thirty-five days at a stretch in Jaipur and then, came to Mumbai on a two-day break. Jaipur has become my second home now. I do miss my family which is based in Mumbai but one has to remember that work is important.
In 2020, when the world had to deal with the Covid-19 situation, you went back to your hometown Gadarwara in Madhya Pradesh. You were not sure when work will resume in the industry and set up a business pertaining to cement and concrete. Was it difficult to go through this phase?
When you work in the entertainment industry, you have to accept the fact that it is an unpredictable industry. There would be days when you will be offered multiple projects and there might come a time when you would be wondering why you are not getting any work. Just before the Covid-19 situation happened, I was in search of good work. There was a phase when I was not getting any interesting projects.
When the Covid-19 situation happened, I started losing hope and started looking for an alternative. I have been a very patient person but I realized one needs to have a backup plan as well. I started a business in my hometown. Slowly, the industry started opening up. By God’s grace, I am now very busy as an actor and my business is doing very well too. Whenever I faced a problem in life, I looked for a solution.
Your journey in the industry started with you participating in the reality show ‘Zee Cinestars Ki Khoj’. You have been acting professionally for more than fifteen years now. How do you look back at your journey?
I have been hugely inspired by Manoj Bajpayee’s journey. I keep watching his interviews. I am sure a lot of actors have been inspired by him. Irrfan Khan will always be one of my biggest inspirations. His body of work will continue to inspire generations. I feel the struggle you go through as an artist helps you become a better professional.
You are one of the first actors to venture into the web space. In the year 2007, long before the digital revolution took place, you did a show called ‘Akbar Birbal Remixed’ that was broadcast on Rajshri.com.
Rajjat Barjatya ji was a visionary. He launched an OTT platform in 2007. He knew that the world will be driven by the internet and smartphones very soon. Back then, most people couldn’t even imagine that content could be made for online portals. I was fortunate to work with Rajshri Productions at such an early stage of my career.
Most of your work as an actor has been on television. In 2019, you did a web series called ‘Faceless’. Do you wish to do more work in the digital space?
Yes, I do wish to be a part of good web shows. When I was shooting for ‘Love Story’ with Anurag Basu, I remember him telling me that ‘TV is like net practice’. Now, I want to play matches on OTT and films.
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