World Theatre Day: Theatre actors who deserve a Bollywood break

On the occasion of World Theatre Day today, we ask a few personalities, who moved from the stage to the silver screen, to pick one theatre actor who deserves a Bollywood break

Nimrat Kaur
Karan Pandit, Nimrat Kaur and Ahlam Khan
I can think of two people who are completely obscure from screen space. There is this young actor called Karan Pandit, who is extremely enthusiastic and quite a force to reckon with. There is never a time when he doesn't give his 150 per cent. The other name is that of Ahlam Khan, who happens to be Amjad Khan's daughter. She is electrifying as a performer. I make it a point to watch her plays.

Shilpa Shukla
Shilpa Shukla and Shalini Vatsa

Shalini Vatsa, who debuted in the 2010 film 'Peepli (Live)' as Natha's wife and was also a good performer in Shahid and 'Shanghai' (both 2012 films). She has a mind-blowing body of work on stage with Habeeb Tanveer sir and is Barry John's favourite. She has acted in several plays with eminent presence, but is unexplored as a film actor. I am a fan of her comic timing. Shalini actually reminds me of Supriya Pathak, another favourite actor of mine.

Manav Kaul
Manav Kaul and Akarsh Khurana

Akarsh Khurana has been directing plays since a long time and is simply fantastic. I feel he should definitely get into Bollywood. He has a wonderful sense of script and knows how to train actors. The other person is theatre actor Anand Tiwari. He worked as an assistant for 'Barfi!' (2012). He has directed some short films too. I think both of them will make it big in Bollywood. They are very promising and I love seeing their work.

Kalki Koechlin
Kalki Koechlin and Chitrangada Chakraborty

Chitrangada Chakraborty is a talented young theatre actor, extremely versatile and sincere and would make for a good film actor.

Manoj Bajpayee
Manoj Bajpayee and Alok Chatterjee

I used to admire Alok Chatterjee a lot during my theatre days. He was Irrfan's classmate. I have learnt a lot from him and look up to him, but every person has his own destiny. He never ventured into Bollywood and at times, I feel bad about that since he is so talented. He does theatre in Bhopal, his hometown. Raghubir Yadav and Nawazuddin Siddiqui are two other people with a theatre background who I admire. I feel Nawaz waited for a long time to enter Bollywood, but  has finally got his due.

Neil Bhoopalam
Neil Bhoopalam
I don't have a name, but there is far more acceptance when it comes to theatre actors now. The advantage of theatre is that the writers, actors and directors are constantly doing what they are best at so they have nailed the technique. When a film comes along, they are already prepared. The main thing as a creative person is you need to do your 'riyaz' (rehearsal). I do one film a year, but I am performing almost every week.

Richa Chadha
Richa Chadda and Barry John

I would like to see Barry John become a director because he is exceptionally good with actors.

— Compiled by Asira Tarannum

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