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'I Am Kalam' child actor wants to do abnormal role

National award-winning 'I am Kalam' child actor Harsh Mayar says he wants to perform the role of an abnormal boy to prove his acting prowess in the film industry.

Harsh Mayar
Harsh Mayar

"I am in search of a role...something different which people have not seen earlier...the role should be challenging...may be something like a child psycho. I would like to perform the role of a boy who is abnormal but smart," the Delhi-based Mayar, who was here to attend a children's festival, told IANS in an interview.

"My preference is experimental films. I want to perform a role which is something different. I want to do something which is unique," said Mayar, who liked "Taare Zameen Par", the movie which depicted Darsheel Safary as lazy and as a troublemaker until a new art teacher discovers the real problem behind his struggles.

"Many would prefer to play glamorous roles but I would like to perform a role abnormal children who are not good looking and have physical and mental deficiencies can relate to. They should feel after watching the movie that they too can do better," the 16-year old actor said.

"I have been inspired by Shah Rukh Khan. I somehow relate to him because he once belonged to Delhi and I also belong to the same city. His family background was not that good the way my family background was," said the child actor, who won a National Film Award in 2011 for the his performance in 'I Am Kalam'.

Mayar started his career in 2005 when he was only eight. He joined Shri Ram Centre in Delhi with his uncle paying the fees because his parents were not able to do so.

During that time, he appeared in six stage shows. Afterwards, he auditioned 180 times for singing, dancing and acting roles. He was selected for "Chillar Party", a 2011 children's film directed by Nitesh Tiwari and Vikas Bahl, but he did not match the role and decided against the film.

Around that time he fractured his hand while playing. After a few months, when his hand had healed, he got a call for an audition. Initially Mayar showed no interest but his parents pesuaded him to do so. After one week he a received the call saying he had been selected for "I Am Kalam", produced by the Smile Foundation and directed by Nila Madhab Panda.

The film was shot in Rajasthan in 2009 and released Aug 5, 2011. The film got several awards at home and abroad including the Filmfare award for Best Story, the National Film Award for Best Child Artist, the Stardust award for Best Actor, and the Best Feature Film award of the Chicago International Children's Film Festival.

Mayar's next film "Jalpari" was released in 2012. He also worked in "Chaarfutiya Chhokare", a 2014 Bollywood thriller written and directed by Manish Harishankar and produced by Sunill Khosla and Vibha Dutta Khosla that also featured Soha Ali Khan.

He has also acted in Hollywood film "Desires of the Heart" and has now forayed into television through a popular show of Channel V, "Gumrah".

"I have seen his work very closely, Harsh is very professional and focussed, he always had the potential and just needed the right opportunity. Our organisation, Smile Foundation, is committed to encouraging him by all means and is supporting his education since we met him. Education is the key to any success," Jitendra Mishra, associate producer of 'I Am Kalam', told IANS.

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