Onscreen he personifies pure evil but off it he is diametrically different. Well-known for his negative role in films like Gulal, Rakht Charitra, ABHIMANYU SINGH in person is far more likable and approachable than his onscreen persona hints at. Abhimanyu Singh hasn’t been seen much on the small screen but he returns to the world of small screen with his ongoing serial Upanishad Ganga, produced by Chinmaya Mission and Directed by Dr Chandraprakash Dwivedi, the serial is currently running on DD. Abhimanyu talks to Johnson Thomas about his newest ventures.
Firstly, tell us something about this new serial “Upanishad Ganga”, what is it all about?
The serial is based on the teachings of Upanishads. This serial will bring the audience closer to the Indian Philosophy and explain them the Vedas and Upanishads in the form of stories. The serial is a treasure trove of rare stories. The stories are old yet presented in a new format.
So what will be your character in this serial?
Well, I am playing 33 different characters in this serial. So you will see me in the avatar of Lord Krishna, Lord Indra, Emperor Ashoka and many more. 33 characters in one serial is quiet a score, so which one of these is your favourite character? All the characters that I played were quite exciting but for some reason I liked playing Lord Indra. May be, because I could relate to him. His is more human than a god can be, with his own share of virtues and vices.
Now that we are talking about the characters, what is your dream role?
Oh! I would love to play the character of Maharana Pratap and Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj someday.
Is it that you love to just work in strong, off beat films like Gulal and Rakht Charitra ?
It nothing like I work only in strong, off beat films. But I am willing to work in all kinds of films.
You come from Patna, so did you have to struggle a lot to get to this position?
Ups and downs are always there. But it was much of a trouble for me. I hail from Patna but I moved to Delhi for my graduation. When in college I often worked in college dramas. And later realizing it as a career goal, I moved to Mumbai. Here I took proper theatre training and while doing theatres my work got noticed. After which the offers started flowing in.
Talking about serial, did it take a lot of preparations for the kind of characters you portrayed?
Preparations weren’t much except what I usually do for every character that I play. Since I believe in method acting, I research before portraying any character. For me creative satisfaction is very important. I get into the skin of the character so as to make it more alive and realistic.
So is that why they call you “Critics’ Favourite Baby”?
(Laughs) They call me that? Well, maybe that’s because I put in all my sweat and blood into the work that I do. And not just me, but any actor who works this way towards the characters he plays, his performance will be remembered for ages even though the movie failed to hit the score in box office.
Coming back to Upanishad Ganga how was the experience of working in it?
It was the most enriching and difficult experience of my career. I have grown as an actor with this serial. For me this serial is more like a service to art. And working with Director like Dr Dwivedi was yet another pleasurable experience for me.
What about your forth coming projects?
I am working with RGV in Department. In Department I play negative role that has positive shades.Also I have done an item number in this movie (smiles).Apart from Department I am working in Telugu remake of “Dabbang” and in a movie called Alaap directed by a debutant director Manish Manikpuri.