Art & Entertainment

‘Kaalkoot’ Actor Rohan Verma: Working With Vijay Verma Was Like A Masterclass In Listening

‘Kaalkoot’ actor Rohan Verma opens up on how he prepared to play a complex and layered character in the show.

Actor Rohan Verma And Vijay Verma
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Actor Rohan Verma, who is best known for his work in ‘Bhaukaal 2’, ‘State of Seige : Akshardham’, ‘Main Hero Boll Raha Hu’, among others is currently basking in appreciation for his role in web series ‘Kaalkoot’, which released on JioCinema. Written by Arunabh Kumar and Sumit Saxena and directed by Sumit Saxena, it stars Vijay Varma, Shweta Tripathi, Seema Biswas, Yashpal Sharma and others.

The actor, in a recent chat with Outlook, got candid about how he prepped for his character, working experience and the kind of responses he's getting. 

Talking about his role and how he landed it, Rohan shared, "Maanav Gupta, my character in the show, is a layered and complex role to embody. Sumit Saxena and Arunabh Kumar’s writing is a treat for any actor to bite their teeth into. Although with limited screen time my character serves a critical purpose in the narrative. You will have to watch the entire series to know this character in all its shades. Landing the role was an organic process. I was shooting for ‘Bhaukaal 2’ in Lucknow when I got a call from Omkar Nautiyal from the casting team who tested me for Maanav. I found the audition script itself to be very intriguing and layered. There was so much subtext to what was written. The sensitivity of the writers was evident and I am glad that Sumit sir in the final audition trusted me to interpret the material."

Sharing about how he prepared to play a complex character, he added, "The preparation was completely internal for this one. The realistic raw nature of the show was clear from the beginning. And it was important for me to personalise the material to bring out the nuances it deserves. It was definitely uncomfortable as an actor to craft and stay with the complexity, but I always knew that I am serving a very important story that needs to be told."

Describing his working experience with his co-actors Vijay Verma and Shweta Tripathi, he mentioned, “I look up to Vijay sir’s journey and body of work. He has inspired so many of us to stay honest to our craft while also being patient and trusting our individual journeys. Working with him was like a masterclass in listening. The attention he pays to his co-actor in a scene is a treat for any actor. It’s because of his presence that I was able to allow my performance to reveal without having to try too much. Shweta ma'am is thoroughly professional and a master with her craft. I was intimated at first by her ease honestly, but she brings so much love and joy in her presence that I couldn’t help but feel at ease after the first take."

Talking about the kind of responses he is receiving for the show, he said, "The episodes are released on a daily basis so the responses are evolving everyday. But the show is receiving a heartwarming response from audiences and critics alike. It’s one of the most socio-politically important stories that have been told in the last decade and just to be a part of it makes me feel fulfilled and proud."

Speaking about the show, he signed off by saying, "The series doesn't just talk about toxic masculinity but explores so many other aspects of our socio-cultural fabric that we have not reflected in our cinema or series for a long time now. It forces you to reflect on it in your own life. It’s uncomfortable because we have been a part of this system. It’s a show that not just needs to be watched for its superior writing, direction, cinematography, music but also for what it does to you after you have finished watching it. I feel every element of the show is a USP."

‘Kaalkoot’ released on JioCinema on July 27, 2023.

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