Actor Sachin Khedekar has been a part of number of Hindi, Marathi, Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam and Gujarati films and theatre as well. And while he feels he has got ample opportunity in other languages, in Hindi films, he hasn’t got a powerful performance oriented role yet.
“The way I could make a mark in Telugu films, I couldn’t make that kind of mark in Hindi. The commercial Hindi cinema is mostly about star power, which is why I get fringe characters in big films. In Hindi films, character actors become image bound and breaking away that image is tough. Also with the casting process these days, when they want a person from the North, they look for those faces and when they cast for a Gujarati character, they go to actors from Gujarat. There is nothing wrong with it as they want to be authentic, but they don’t trust actors to look the part, even if they are personally not from the region. Such segregation makes it tough for actors like me who suffer. But it is not too late, one can hope for it.
Khedekar is excited with the digital boom and is looking forward to his OTT film soon. He feels the digital platform is suited for his kind of roles. He says, “Web gives you creative freedom and allows you space to explore a character. Unlike, the commercial trappings of Hindi cinema, or on TV, which is a TRP driven medium, OTT is a perfect space for me.”
Since the lockdown, a number of Hindi and regional films have found their way on OTT platforms, but it has not been the same with Marathi films. Talking about the possible reasons, he shares, “Marathi films are struggling. There are a 100 odd films waiting for release and they have a permanent struggle to get prime time shows in multiplexes anyway. And now with the cinemas being shut, they are in a soup. I think, there is a lot of appetite for Marathi films, but as a handful of OTT platforms seem to be the outlet for different kinds of films, web series, so it’s getting crowded. In regional cinema, Marathi cinema are content driven films but not big budgeted. So, they lose out somewhere.”
Khedekar will soon be seen in a film called Halahal, where he plays a father who wants to find out the reason behind his daughter’s death. Working on OTT project was exciting for him and he was happy to work with a young team. “The script by Zeeshan Quadari and is based on a real incident. My character Dr Shiv was so well written that I couldn’t refuse. I call it an emotional thriller and we shot it in Ghaziabad and other places. When Shiv’s daughter is killed, he tries to find out the truth and how the system keeps him at bay. He finds help in a cop, played by Barun Sobti. He was quite cool to work with and quite talented,” he says.