“My favourite scenes are with Ayesha Raza”, says Anshuman Jha about Babbar Ka Tabbar

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Anshuman Jha is currently enjoying the positive reviews and messages that he is receiving for the portrayal of his character Jamia in the latest web show Babbar Ki Tabbar. The show is currently available for streaming on ZEE5’s digital platforms with six episodes of the first season, awaiting the next six. BKT is a comical family drama that highlights the generational problems between parents and their millennial kids in a quirky way. Playing the titular role of Mr. Babbar is acclaimed actor Manu Rishi and his Mrs. Babbar is Ayesha Raza. Anshuman a.k.a Jamia is the ‘sutradhaar’ in the show, is a tenant with the Babbar’s and is always at their rescue.

When asked how Anshuman would like to describe his character, he said, “quirky, eccentric, a problem-solver and a foolish-scholar or a scholar-foolish of sorts.” The quirk beings right with the name which named after the college that he graduated from. Playing Jamia, he mentioned, was challenging, unconventional and something never done before. The actor who has garnered critical acclaim for his previous roles is excited for his digital venture for it will allow people to access his content as per their wants and is a new way ahead for actors.

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The show features an interesting ensemble cast in its pivotal roles, he said, “it was absolutely lovely, enriching and a learning experience”. Anshuman who admires his co-stars Manu and Ayesha, admits to being a fan of two long before this show happened. After Love Sex Aur Dhoka, the actor had been “itching” to work with Manu again. When he greenlit the web show and was informed about Manu playing the titular role, Anshuman was clearly overjoyed. Ayesha, who plays the mother in the show, is “extremely giving” said Anshuman. In fact, he even credits her for bringing out the best in him on screen. “Most of my favourite scenes in the show are Ayesha ma’am”, he said, whom he also referred to as the “sexiest aunty”.

The theatre actor who debuted with Dibakar Banerjee’s Love Sex Aur Dhoka has a rather interesting line up of artists he has collaborated with. When asked about Sanjay Mishra, Rajat Kapoor and his debut director, he said, “They’ve taught me to keep working. They’re all unique in their own ways. I share different levels of bond with all of them.” A self-claimed fanboy of Sanjay Mishra with whom he shared the screen in Angrezi Mein Kehte Hai said, “I share a special bond with him. He is clearly my most favourite human being. We’ve gone from professional to personal now. He is a person I treasure the most.” They share love, respect and calls him his “guide”.

The teen Anshuman who handled lights and stage for Rajat Kapoor’s play Blue Mug, was in “awe, admiration and looked up to” him and working on X: Past is Present was no less than a dream for him. Anshuman shared an interesting anecdote about his debut. He shared, “I went to watch Oye Lucky Oye with my friend in PVR Juhu and I told him that this is the director I want to debut with”. And boom! Soon he ticked off yet another dream from his bucket list.  “Dibaker is the best filmmaker in India. I admire him on another level. He tunes his actors into the character subconsciously without you even realizing. He is both clinical and personal. It’s a contrast but that’s his magic”. An aficionado of the Khosla Ka Ghosla director, Anshuman calls Dibakar “beautiful to work with.”

Once again, he emphasizes the fact that it a script that drives him to do a project. However, turns out there are is a lot more, “It is the process. Success or failure of a film is not in our hands. It’s the script but mostly it is the instinct.” It was this instinct that made him chose Angrezi Mein Kehte Hai over Dil Junglee. “Jamia was a product of a month-long preparation. Knowing that the producers of the show were ready to sit with him and invest in the prep was turned me on”, he added. While he believes “actor doesn’t make the choice; choices make the actor”, Anshuman is all set to get his hands on an out an out Bollywood film though, it must happen out of his instinct.

Though the top searches on internet cast him under the “off-beat actor” tag, he remains neutral to such typecasts and is willing to work towards breaking the shell – something that he has learnt from his (industry) teachers. He said, “I believe in controlling the controllable. Cinema is a directors medium while theatre remains an actor’s medium. Perseverance is something you should never let go off. Stay at it. Get out of your comfort zone.”

Anshuman Jha is excitedly awaiting the audience response for Babbar Ka Tabbar.

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