‘Movie Should Be Paisa Vasool’

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Social Media Influencer Viraj Ghelani Has Had A Fantastic Year Already, Having Marked His Debut As A Stand-Up Comedian And Now, The Lead In Gujarati Horror-Comedy Film Jhamkudi. Here’s How He Is Taking It All…

After he debuted as an actor with cameos in Bollywood films Govinda Naam Mera (2022) and Jawan (2023), social media influencer and content creator Viraj Ghelani debuted as a stand-up comedian with two houseful shows in Mumbai. And now he is basking in the rave reviews he has received for his turn as the lead in Gujarati horror-comedy Jhamkudi, opposite actress-singer Manasi Parekh Gohil. All this in the first six months of 2024!
What’s interesting is that on the day of Jhamkudi’s release, Viraj, instead of making his funny reels for his social media handles, was busy checking movie ticket applications and cinema houses to see the booking status! “I want people to return home happy and they should feel paisa vasool. I am a Gujarati and this will always be the first thought right?

“I want the audience to like my acting, my film and my comic timing. I want to know if they find me or my romance style cringe-worthy… all of it is for the first time for me, and so these thoughts,” Viraj shared with Mirror during a visit to the city.

The story behind Jhamkudi
Recalling, how he bagged the film, Viraj said that he met Manasi during the premiere of one of Pratik Gandhi’s films. “She turned around and on seeing me she said, ‘You are Viraj right? I am a fan of your content. Umang (Vyas – the director) will call you soon.’ For the longest time, I felt that both Manasi and Umang bhai wanted me to promote their Gujarati film. But when they started reading the script to me, I realised, they are offering me the film,” said he.

“I had played cameos before so I thought my role would be that of Ghelchandra, the best friend. Why would someone offer me the lead role right? When they informed me I was playing the lead, Bablo, my jaw dropped. I blurted, ‘You are offering me a movie. And you are offering me a lead role. Are you alright?’” laughed Viraj. The actor Viraj is thankful to Ojas Rawal, Sanjay Goradia, Manasi, and Sanjay Galsar for helping him throughout the film, especially with the diction and pronunciation of Gujarati words.

He said, “I am grateful to Manasi and Parthiv because they got a newcomer like me in an industry, where two or three names rule the roost like Yash Soni, Malhar Thakkar, et al. It is a big responsibility for me to ensure the film is a success.”

Dealing with the ‘debut’ nerves
Even during the shoot, Viraj reveals that he was a nervous wreck, primarily because, as a newcomer, he did not want Manasi and Umang to feel they made a ‘mistake’ in offering him the role. “I tried to put my best foot forward. I did not want them to feel that they were wasting their money and time behind me. When we wrapped up, Umang bhai said, ‘I thought that you would act the way you do on Instagram, but you cleared my doubts. You acted well’. That was a relief,” he said.

“After doing a full-length feature film, I realised that people are fake. I have seen people doing nakhras on why they got a certain project or a role, rather than focusing on the craft – acting. I don’t know where will life take me but I believe in being grounded and not self-centred. Thankfully, I have good people around me, who constantly give me the reality check,” he concluded.

The post ‘Movie Should Be Paisa Vasool’ appeared first on InfluencersPro.

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