2020 gave much needed attention to hardworking actors: Abhishek Banerjee

It is a very different character. Later I realised they were doing this because they had fun watching me as Hathoda Tyagi. It’s like the coach might be a good player, but doesn’t mean he’ll play the match himself, even if he wants to. All of us, especially in our 30s, have been working for a long time without paying heed to our personal lives and families. Casting Bay also worked on some of the biggest projects this year (Bandish Bandits, Bulbbul, Pataal Lok, Mirzapur 2, Panchayat, Lootcase). Also, coincidently, Thor is my favourite superhero. I want to be more choosy with scripts. What has changed is the greed for doing meatier parts. But it came 7-8 years in advance, when I did Stree (2018). Of course, my team and basic core is very solid. 2020 has given much-needed attention to hardworking actors. When you get a casting project, do you now look for roles for yourself more? But then the lockdown happened. Even though I wasn’t cast in Mirzapur 2, many remembered me from Season 1. For me, the story is of prime importance. View this post on Instagram

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What change did 2020 bring in you? Read: Express Rewind | Jaideep Ahlawat 
On the work front, how do you see 2021 shaping up for you? The trailer of Pataal Lok came out on my birthday (May 5). I didn’t understand the concept of memes initially. It is important what I do next so that viewers can move on from Hathoda Tyagi. I would have never imagined myself as Hathoda Tyagi. So, the first time I saw the Thor meme, I thought people were making fun of me. I’m looking forward to Rashmi Rocket. When I started acting, that was the first time I stopped being in office. They said they missed Compounder. I completed Aankh Michoni and was supposed to start my first Bengali film in March. Honestly, there was pressure even before. Covid has taught us to live our lives with whatever resources we have. So, all that fear vanished. It took a bit of time to get used to such a life. That’s a huge change and a new beginning. I keep an eye on the casting process too. © IE Online Media Services Pvt Ltd


Abhishek Banerjee All the praise I received was a culmination of years of dedication towards my craft. People understand and appreciate acting more. In an exclusive chat with indianexpress.com, Abhishek spoke about the success and adulation he received due to his performances this year, balancing the dual job of an actor and casting director, and what changes did the lockdown bring to his life. I was obviously very hopeful about the show, but I didn’t expect such a huge response. Suddenly, during the lockdown, the entire world began casting like that. I auditioned for Pataal Lok only after the makers asked me to. If someone wants to cast me, they tell me upfront. So, March-April was depressing as I didn’t know what to do at home. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines
For all the latest Entertainment News, download Indian Express App. One good thing you’ll remember about 2020? I know whatever I do henceforth is for me to have fun than to prove anything to anybody. View this post on Instagram

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How did you cope with the lockdown? Written by Mimansa Shekhar
| New Delhi |

Updated: December 2, 2020 11:51:19 am

Abhishek Banerjee also owns the casting company – Casting Bay. 📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. For two and a half years, I was casting on WhatsApp and video calls. So, I didn’t get time to adjust to the new phase. There are anthologies for Netflix and Amazon too. (Photo: Girish Rajput/Instagram)Abhishek Banerjee says, “What happened this year feels like a dream. From then on, my life completely changed. As an actor, you always want to be known by your character. I want to do parts which have more time and relevance. Helmet and Aankh Michoni are up for release. Now with acting in full swing, do you find it challenging to balance both jobs? The way you approach your characters and projects, has it changed in the past few years? Then I started enjoying it too. You have doubts about yourself as an actor, thinking am I doing enough? How was 2020 for you?https://images.indianexpress.com/2020/08/1×1.png
As I had planned it, acting was supposed to happen to me at around 40. But I will also do commercial films because I love that. There are so many in 2020 who have grabbed attention just because of their talent. How did you react to all the memes around Hathoda Tyagi? It was full of surprises.” The actor, who played one of the year’s most popular characters – Hathoda Tyagi in Pataal Lok, was also seen in projects such as Kaali 2, Bhonsle and Suraj Pe Mangal Bhari. Excerpts from the conversation:
Your Paatal Lok character Hathoda Tyagi was memorable.