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OTTplay Exclusive! Jatin Sial: I still don't believe Rishi Kapoor has left us

A close cousin to Rishi Kapoor, Sial made a debut with Sashi Kapoor's film but decided never to use his family's contacts for work.

Shaheen Irani
Sep 09, 2021
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Jatin Sial in Potluck.

Actor Jatin Sial, best remembered for his roles in Aa Ab Laut Chalen and Kasam Se, is back with the web show Potluck. Jatin, who made his debut with Rishi Kapoor's film, is unable to come to terms with his death and wishes to live in denial.

In an exclusive interview with OTTplay, Jatin, who is currently working on Mismatched 2, speaks about his upcoming show Potluck and the Kapoor family gatherings. He believes the web is letting him play his second innings as an actor and he shares his experience working with young faces on the shows.

Excerpts from the interview...

You were quite the name in the 2000s. Why did you take a break for almost 7 years then?

It was not a deliberate break. The offers weren't up to my sleeve. The roles didn't interest me much. Hence, I kept delaying and procrastinating. There were a few roles I wanted to do but they didn't work out. That is how the breaks happened.

You entered the web space with Mismatched and now are a part of Potluck. Would you call it your new innings?

I can say that, yes. Web is a lovely innings I look forward to. The spectrum of roles I'm offered now and the characters are very interesting.

Despite coming from an influential Kapoor family, your journey hasn't always been a smooth ride, even if you are loved as an actor. What happened there?

I never used the family contacts. I've been very close to my uncles and cousins. I started my career with Mr. Shashi Kapoor but I never used the name or influence. There were so many shows where my co-stars didn't know that I'm the grandson of Prithviraj Kapoor. So many of my co-stars asked me about it two years after working with me. I never felt the need to use the family name. Since they are my family, I don't bring them into my professional life even if they are pioneers in the profession.

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Aa Ab Laut Chalen.

You had assisted Rishi Kapoor in his directorial debut Aa Ab Laut Chalen. You both were close cousins. The year 2020 must have come as a shock with Rishi's death. You lost a family member and also probably a friend.

Yes, I was very close to him. Mr. Rishi Kapoor was the hero in Ajooba, which is the film I started as an apprentice. I became very close to Chintu ji while working on Aa Ab Laut Chalen. Not only did I act in the film, but he also asked me to assist him in the American schedule of the film. I'm very fond of him. It was a tremendous shock. Even today, I don't believe that this has happened. He was a great guy. It was a great loss.

Is the Kapoor family anything like the Shastri family?

Yes, we have so many family gatherings. This kind of activity has been going on since Mr. Prithviraj Kapoor's times. Togetherness is a ritual in the family.

Does the Kapoor family host Potluck too?

No. It's a one-sided lunch or dinner. There are times when people love a certain food, say biryani. That is when someone else brings food.

Is there any character like yours in Potluck, in the Kapoor family?

No, no (laughs). This is a very special character for me. He has a lot of quirkiness in him. I don't identify a person in our family who is like him. Of course, we have a great sense of humour around in the Kapoor family.

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Kapoor family.

While you have been from the generation that introduced cinema (Kapoor family), Cyrus Sahukar is one of the first few faces of MTV, which is now one of the most popular channels on TV, especially among the youth. Did it bring a good mix on the sets?

Yes, of course. Not only with Cyrus but other actors too. All of us bonded really well. All of us stayed together during the shooting in a bio-bubble. The synergy between actors was absolutely smooth. All of us came up with our own ideas and methods and gelled very well.

Seeing that you have almost always played a saint-like character on TV, did you instantly jump at the opportunity of playing someone crazy and yet controlled?

I came across the producers for the role so naturally that it just blended with the character. I didn't have to make any effort.

People are comparing Potluck to Gullak. What's your viewpoint on that?

I don't want to compare it with any show but it's definitely worth watching. What you feel in the promo, you'll get the same feeling while watching the show. I'm sure of that. The whole show is so refreshing that people will love it.

Since the show is refreshing - it is without violence or abuses - was that the reason you picked it up?

There was no one particular reason. It was the character, story and everything falling in place. Those are different genres of shows. Potluck doesn't need violence. I loved the character and plot. It's come out very well.

While we know that you have started shooting for Mismatched 2, what are the other projects you have at hand?

Let them happen. I will announce them once that is finalized.

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