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Why so serious, Maniesh Paul?

Updated on: 09 June,2023 07:42 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Hiren Kotwani |

With Maniesh known for his comic timing, Rafuchakkar’s makers on casting him against type as a serious conman in his OTT debut

Why so serious, Maniesh Paul?

A still from 'Rafuchakkar'

When it comes to host-actor Maniesh Paul, most of us expect a laugh a minute. His maiden web series Rafuchakkar then comes as a refreshing change of pace. Creative duo Arjun Singgh Baran and Kartk Nishandar say they were certain about casting Paul as a remorseless conman swindling the rich and corrupt. Nishandar explains, “Maniesh is known for his comic timing on reality shows. People would expect him to do comedy, so it was a great casting [choice] as he is doing a serious show in his first OTT venture.”

Kartk Nishandar and Arjun Singgh Baran Kartk Nishandar and Arjun Singgh Baran 

In Ritam Shrivastav’s directorial venture, the actor will be seen in different avatars — from a 70-year-old villager, to a gym trainer and a Sardar — as his character pulls off one con after another. Shooting with prosthetics was a challenge for Paul, says Nishandar. “Maniesh would feel claustrophobic in the prosthetics. So, he took six days to get used to them. He had to gain 15 to 20 kilos to play a  villager, and then lose the excess weight, and attain a ripped physique to essay the part of a gym trainer.” 

The creative duo, who have previously made Naxalbari (2020) and Raktanchal (2020), consider the nine-part JioCinema series among the toughest offerings they have worked on. Baran reasons, “What makes the genre of con dramas difficult is that we can’t have any loops open. So, we spent about a year-and-a-half only to write it.”

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