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Wednesday, December 05, 2007


He's one of the top actors in television thanks to one of the longest running television series - Kasamh Se. It's helped him bag several acting awards, put him firmly in the limelight and won him fans - young and old alike, quite something for someone who was never interested in acting. Things fell into place when Ram Kapoor was pushed into it by his school headboy (Tarun Deo, it was) at Sherwood.
"Sherwood is known for its theatre but I was never interested in theatre. When I was in the 9th standard, Aamir Raza Hussain came to direct our Founders Day play, I was pushed into going for the auditions by the school's head boy. I didn't think anything would come out of it. I just went for it, auditioned and ended up getting the role. Three months of rehersals, then the performance. Somewhere in that process, I realized that I really liked doing this, plus school gave me a very good response. I started taking theatre very seriously, I did a lot of theatre with Aamir Raza Hussain, then I went abroad, studied for it."

While he makes it sound very simple, things weren't all that easy. He didn't have the heart to tell his parents he was off to study theatre in the US and this is how he ended up charting his theatrical course:
"I went to America on the pretence of getting into UCLA at the film school. Once I got there I couldn't get into the theatre school I wanted to study in. So I stayed in America for a year, did odd jobs, sold cars, sold credit cards, insurance, just about everything to sustain myself. On my second attempt I got into the theatre school."

Once he got entry into the school of his choice, it was a lot of tough work, which involved the intense study of 'method acting', something that's always been his inspiration:
"Method acting is a very intense, very old way of learning acting. All my inspiration for acting comes from people who have studied method acting like Marlon Brando, Pacino, De Niro, so I wanted to go those kind of schools, which is why I applied for method acting. The easiest way to explain it is its internal acting. They teach you how to feel what you are performing. Not just perform but to feel it too. It's a very long drawn process but I'm very happy that I got to learn it."

That training has come handy for the persona he plays on television today. While he has a huge fan base, Ram Kapoor is best associated with playing the role of a much older man on the small screen. But he isn't afraid of being typecast:
"It's a fantastic role. I've never had a problem with playing a character much older than I actually am. My method acting training in fact, has taught me to play roles that I'm actually not. If I just have to be myself then I don't even need to act. If I act, I want to play every possible role - older, younger, positive, negative - that's where the challenge lies for me. So when I was told I have to play a role that's 10 years older than I actually am, I had no problems. There are people who do have problems but I have absolutely no issues playing an older man."

Just as he has no problems taking on roles that may make him look older,
Ram Kapoor also has no problems staying put in television:
"It's a very exciting time to be in Indian television. I'm very proud of the fact that I'm in the television today. Lots of reporters and journalists who interview me back home always ask me if I want to make the transition to film and I always say I'm very happy being in television. I've done some cinema, parallel or art films as you'd call them, but the draw of television has been too intense. The exposure is a lot all over the world. This year alone, I've travelled to five different countries and the response everywhere has been phenomenal. Television is just booming in India and I can say with certainty that this is just the beginning and I'm extremely proud to be associated with it."

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