His boy-next-door looks and endearing smile have earned him a huge female fan following but TV actor Jay Bhanushali says he is desperately trying for an image makeover by doing films which will show him in a different light.
The 29-year-old actor made his Bollywod debut with erotic thriller 'Hate Story 2', which was a clear departure from the roles he has so far portrayed on TV shows. His upcoming film 'Desi Kattey' is about guns and gangsters. "I want to change my image. I don't want to play a cute guy in films. The audience has seen me in that role in my shows on TV. But I am making a conscious decision to stay away from such roles in films," Bhanushali told PTI.
"Why will people pay Rs 300 and watch me do the same thing again? I want to do something different. I want my work to have a shock value in a good way," he added. In the Anand Kumar-directed action drama 'Desi Kattey', Bhanushali will play the role of Gyani, a small time worker in a hand-made pistol factory, who eventually represents India at the Olympics as a shooter.
In order to fit the role, the actor says he honed his shooting skills with a coach besides working on his body and over all look. "I trained with a shooting coach in order to get the basic posture and knowledge about guns. Also, I did not shave for months and kept growing my beard because I wanted to sport a rugged, mature look. When I started shooting I weighed 82 kgs and so I lost eight kgs in order to look like a boy who is impoverished. And for the second half I worked out to get a more muscular body like a sportsman," he said.
'Desi Kattey' also stars Suniel Shetty, Akhil Kapur, Sasha Agha, Ashutosh Rana among others and will hit theatres on September 12, just two months after the release of his debut film 'Hate Story 2'.
The actor says he is lucky to have films releasing back-to-back in the very first year of his debut. "Never in my wildest dream I thought that I would be doing two films in a year. It is a huge feat for me. 'Hate Story 2' did a decent business of Rs 27 crores, the result was good keeping in mind the budget it was made in," he said, Bhanushali is currently shooting for 'Leela' with Sunny Leone and the film will release next year.
Several TV stars like Rajeev Khandelwal, Sushant Singh Rajput, Yami Gautam, Pulkit Samrat have successfully made a transition from TV to the silver screen and Bhanushali says their triumph has made the road to Bollywood films easier for small screen actors.
"I thank the actors who have graduated from TV to films and showed a way to many like me. Their success has changed the scenario and also the perception about TV actors in the film industry.
Earlier people thought that TV actors can't carry a film, they can't cope with pressure of working in a movie. "But past actors have proved them wrong and now people are ready to invest money in us. People respect the fact that not only can TV actors act, they also have a huge fan following which helps to create a buzz about the film," Bhanushali said.