The immensely talented actor Rajeev Paul is all set to make the comeback with Star Bharat’s (Life OK – rebranded) latest offering Jiji Maa. For the very first time the actor will be seen playing the character of a father on screen. He will be seen essaying the character of Jayant Rawat, a gentleman and a kind hearted person. He will be seen paired against Pallavi Pradhan. We got in touch with Rajeev for the candid conversation.

How excited are you being part of Star Bharat’s show Jiji Maa?

I am super excited! As I’ve been away from the TV screen for so long, you have no idea how awesome I feel to be back in the sets!! It’s almost like a relaunch for me along with the channel and shows launch.

 How did you bag the role?

When I got a call for this show in March 2017 this year, not many know but I had lost my father Col Jogendra Singh Paul on 26th December 2016, So I was not even in Mumbai for couple of months. And I was in huge emotional turmoil as just 2 years back we had lost our Mother due cancer. So it was not in most trying times when I was certainly not looking for work, neither expected anything nor was I at my best. So I reluctantly went for the meeting and I was not surprised but shocked when I got this final offer. I guess it’s my parent’s blessings that got me this role.

 Tell us something about your character?

The character I play in this show is the coolest character. He’s super rich and he knows it and his take on life is far too relaxed and chilled out. He doesn’t get worried or hassled and basically makes sure that he works out, takes care of his health, and loves his family. He makes sure his family retains good values, eats together, has fun and works with NGOs to make people’s lives better. There are also other reasons why he lets his wife runs all the companies and has taken a backseat. This will be revealed in due course of time.

  How easy or difficult is it to get into the skin of the character?

I guess the magic of being an actor is this that when you reach the sets and your team starts doing your hair make up and when your assistants read out the days scenes to you, while you are donning your costumes.    The Magic happens and you’re transformed into Jayant. Also when I watch films or observe people in real life I take a few things from them and incorporate them in the role.

  How similar or different are you from your character?

There are few similarities that Rajeev Paul has with Jayant Rawat. I would like to believe that we both are super rich and very cool and also fitness freaks. But besides that Jayant owns several industries unlike me, also he’s a father of two grownup kids and has an extremely dominating wife, which fortunately I don’t. But the fun loving Jayant and the one who sings songs often is so much me.

  What brings you back on the television after a long break?

I have been doing a play Wedding Album with Lillete Dubey since last 9 years. Later, I had been waiting for the right rope I could make my comeback with. Sometimes the delays are beyond your control. Sometimes I didn’t like roles offered, and sometimes they didn’t like me for the roles I liked. Also I feel each role is written for a particular actor. So I guess my time had to come NOW. I believe it’s important that how patiently you wait and what do you do while waiting.

  What are your expectations from the show?

I honestly have huge expectations from the show. The producers Jai and Kinnari Mehta are leaving no stones unturned to make the show grand.  Then our director Rohit Raj Goyal is young and talented, he has the pulse of the audience and knows how the scenes should be shot, not just in terms of technical way but also he helps set the right tone and mood of the scene, the way you should walk and talk. Also the writer Mayur Puri has done a great job with the script and Dialogues. Once you watch the show you will understand why I’ve praised these people. As then audience will also feel the same. I feel the audience will get all that they want in a show. Love, romance, masti, husband wife relationship, human values, revenge everything.

  How do you all gel in the cast?

The cast is amazing. Pallavi Pradhan is a superb actor and surely will walk away with the best actress of the year award and is also a fun person to work with. Rajesh Balwani is a senior actor and if he known him for years. Dishank, Shubhashish, Tanvi, and Bhavika are all new talents and have done few shows before. Though I’m working with all of them for the very first time, we get pretty well as there is mutual love and respect that we have for each other.

  What are your goals for the future?

Besides this show I also plan to release two more of my books soon. One is English Fiction and another is Part two of my earlier released book of poetry in Hindi Mumbai Mohabbat Aur Tanhai. This one is complete and will announce the details soon.


Medha Pandya Bhatt


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