Actor Shantanu Monga has marked his name on television with hit shows like Mahabali Hanuman, Vighnaharta Ganesha, Chakradhari Ajay Krishna, Aapke Aa Jane Se, and innumerable others. He was also seen in Alt Balaji's Kar Le Tu Bhi Mohabbat. The prolific actor will now be seen in Humkadam for Ishara Channel ( set to launch on March 1, 2021).
In an exclusive conversation with International Business Times, Shantanu Monga spoke at length about his role in the upcoming show Humkadam, completing 7 years in the city, ups and downs and how he plans to celebrate Valentine's Day.
Excerpts from the interview:
Did you always want to be an actor?
No, it was my brother's dream, and he got caught up with house and responsibilities. Seeing his love and passion for acting, I started doing plays and cultural activities in school and college. I then took formal training in acting, later, did theatre, and then I am doing TV. In a way, I am fulfilling my brother and my dream.
If you had not been an actor, then what?
I would have been behind the camera, but definitely somewhere close to the industry.
How has your 7 years journey in Mumbai been?
It has been a fulfilling journey with loads of ups and downs. I am thankful to the people of Mumbai and the fraternity who stood by me through thick and thin.
Being an established TV actor how convinced were you to take up a show on a new channel Ishara TV yet to launch?
I knew the production house earlier, and I have worked with them. So I wasn't apprehensive at all. When you are working for eight years in the industry, you have the skillset to understand which role leads to what. Ishara channel is all set to launch on March 1.
In the show Humkadam, I play the role of a brother who binds the family. That's all I can divulge at this moment.
What are the safety norms followed on the set?
When I started shooting in June 2020 (Unlock phase), everyone on the sets was in PPE kits, and only the actor's used to unmask that too only in front of the camera. And to date, all the shoots that I have been part of are shooting with utmost protocols. I myself take care of small things/ I am masked on the sets too. I sanitise as well as take a hot water shower once I am back home.
How has the lockdown been for you?
It has been good. I went back home to Delhi on March 23, 2020, and came back in June started shooting. So touchwood I was busy working.
You have been part of several mythological shows have you been typecast ever?
No, I have balanced myself as an actor. I not only do mythological shows; I am also part of daily soaps.
A role that you resonate with the most?
I am yet to get that role.
What are the parameters on which you select a script?
For me, the most important part is I should be convinced about the role. I don't want to do certain scenes or play certain roles just because the script demands, it should justify. I am a very curious actor.
You have been part of Alt Balaji's Karle Tu Bhi Mohabbat any other web shows that you have been offered?
I have been offered, when the time is right, I will let you all know.
The COVID-19 vaccines have rolled out? Will you take the shot?
I wouldn't take the shot as I believe that first the front line workers and the ones who need the vaccine should get it. I am sure many people like me can heal naturally.
As Valentine's day is around the corner, how do you plan to celebrate it?
I don't believe in Valentine's Day. It is very commercialised. If you really love someone, there is no need to dedicate one day.
About Ishara channel
For the unversed, Hindi general entertainment channel – IsharaTV will go on air from 1 March. 5 orginal shows will debut on the channel from the same day.
List of 5 shows :
Mythological masterpiece Paapnaashini Ganga; crime-thriller Faraar Kab Tak; and three fiction shows Agni-Vayu, Humkadam and Janani.