Mohit Raina spoke to OTTplay about his recently released web series Mumbai Diaries 26/11 and the booming content on OTT.
Actor Mohit Raina has gathered an immense fandom with his character of Lord Shiva in the 2011 TV series Devon Ke Dev – Mahadev. The actor was also appreciated for portraying a key role in the 2019 film Uri: The Surgical Strike. He was recently seen in the Amazon Prime Original series Mumbai attacks 26/11.
In a recent chat with OTTPlay, the actor talked about his latest series, his thoughts on censorship on OTT platforms and his upcoming projects among other things.
Mohit started off by speaking about the show and his character. He said, "The series, which is set in the backdrop of the Mumbai attacks i.e. 26/11, has been made from the perspective of doctors. My character, Dr. Kaushik Oberoi, the head of trauma surgery, is not based on a real doctor but is a fictional character. He can be seen dealing with multiple affairs at once."
Furthermore, the actor revealed how he became a part of the Mumbai Diaries 26/11. Mohit mentioned, “I got a call from Nikhil Advani (creator of the series), who told me about the base of the story and revealed that he’s going to make a medical drama on the backdrop of this real event and it’s going to be an Amazon original show. So, I don’t think anyone would have said no to this opportunity. I feel that I was lucky to be that person.”
“Our writers, Yash (Chhetija), Anishka (Mehrotra), Nikhil Gonsalvase, Sayed sheikh Chawla who penned the screenplay of the web series, are also one of the reasons that our show is what it is today. Good writing is the hero of a show or a film,” he added.
Ask Mohit about the research and prep that he had to go through and he says, “When you enter a project, you need to understand the vision of your director and creator. Mr. Advani’s vision was clear that he wanted to tell the story of a government hospital, which is under a lot of chaos and mishappenings. I had to look like a real doctor in that particular environment. To showcase that originality, the workshop is the most important process to go through.”
"We (the cast of the show) were fortunate enough to learn the tips and techniques of real doctors under the supervision of Dr. Sheikh, who was working in a hospital during that unfortunate day. He helped us understand how we need to prepare to look as real as we can," the actor added.
When we asked him what his reaction was back in 2008, Mohit revealed that luckily he was not near any of the places where the unfortunate events took place. The actor was travelling on the outskirts of Mumbai with a few friends. “It was shocking not only for the people of Mumbai or India but for everyone in the world,” he added.
When we asked him, like the doctor's perspective in Mumbai Diaries, which other angles from the 26/11 attacks can be covered, the actor shared, “I’m not very sure but I think it hasn’t been made from the perspective of journalists, who also played a huge role in this event. So, I think something can be made from the media angle as well.”
Mohit used to work as a car dealer in Hyundai motors during his college days. He came to Mumbai to pursue his acting career post that stint. He made his acting debut in 2004 through the TV series Antariksh and later, worked as a model. The actor had also participated in the 2005 Grasim Mr India modelling contest. He got immense fame more than half a decade later, after playing the character of Lord Shiva in the 2011 TV series Devon Ke Dev – Mahadev. Talking about his journey, Mohit recalled all the memories and said, “Those were the good old days. It was just after college. My friends and I worked on a project for Hyundai Motors India Limited. Later, I decided to pursue my acting career and came to Mumbai. I have witnessed a lot of ups and downs. Now, when I look back, I feel lucky and think that God has been kind to me.”
When we asked Mohit which Bollywood actress he would like to romance on screen, the actor paused for a while. Blushing, he then softly named Anushka Sharma.
Mohit also spoke about the burst of content on the OTT platforms and what it means for an aspiring actor. He said, “I think they are lucky that they are getting such a great opportunity to be a part of the industry which is booming a lot now. It has been offering so much to not only actors but everyone who is a part of the industry.”
The actor opined his thoughts about censorship on the OTT platforms and said, “We need to strike a balance. OTT has to be a little responsible.”
“It’s not such a big issue. It can be sorted out,” he signed off.