Anup Soni is a name synonymous with righteousness and justice in the minds of the public, so it’s only natural that the popular TV actor’s new venture should do something to uplift people and give a platform to their stories. . After a successful stint in television, film and theater, Soni hosts a series of stories on Audible of ordinary people doing extraordinary work in various areas of life. In a freewheeling chat with News18.com, the Balika Vadhu actor told us how these stories affect him as a person.
He also talked about the popular show he used to host, Crime Patrol, and how it changed his image. Excerpts from the interview:
The Unsung Heroes being your first podcast, what was your experience?
It was my first experience but being an actor, you know the audio medium and its requirements. Ultimately, it’s all about connecting with the audience. So you have to involve them in the story with your voice, with your emotion and with your narration. When I first started doing it, it took almost an hour and a half to two hours to record a story, but slowly, over time, I made a lot of preparations. I read the stories several times before recording, made the corrections and understood the emotions. And then when I save it, it takes less time. I think preparation helps in any project.
Do the kinds of stories you share with your listeners also affect you in a positive way?
Absolutely, absolutely. The purpose of the story is for people to become positive. And people should think that there is good around us and we just have to choose what we want to do. The stories will also tell people that you don’t need to go out of your way to help the other person. It is important that if you are in a certain privileged situation, and if you can help someone to become a better human being and/or to have a better life, then you must do it because you have the chance to be in this good position. That’s the whole point.
You have taken a course on criminal investigations. Did your TV shows like Crime Patrol or CID inspire you to embrace this?
I think it’s just a coincidence. Before becoming an actor, I was doing my LLB and I wanted to be a criminal lawyer, but obviously acting was there. I went to the National School of Dramatic Art and couldn’t complete my LLB. And imagine, then a show like Crime Patrol happens in my life. So obviously the interest was still there but this Crime Scene Investigation course because during the second wave there was too much depression in the world. It was quite taxing on everyone’s mind and health. So I think that was the time when I wanted to occupy myself with something. And by coincidence, I came across this course, online. There was no agenda, or there was no purpose or planning for doing this course.
Do you feel like people see you more as an anchor after Crime Patrol and less as an actor?
Yes, it happens. When one of your projects gets too popular, it kind of becomes your callback point. But I have always maintained that I am above all an actor. You are not trained to be an anchor, but to act, you do. I have always considered myself an actor. That’s why I took a break from Crime Patrol. Because I wanted to concentrate on my acting missions. I also want people to know that I am an actor. But yes, everything that becomes popular takes a higher place.
Are you planning to return to Crime Patrol?
I did not think about it. Crime Patrol is already activated and has a format that does not require an anchor. From now on, I focus on my acting duties first.
Whether it’s CID, Crime Patrol or Balika Vadhu, your popular roles show you as a righteous person, defending people’s rights and/or justice. Was it a conscious choice to choose these roles?
Absolutely not. I definitely wasn’t working towards a good image by choosing those kinds of roles. They just happened. I’m an actor and I’m on for all kinds of roles. My next web series will see me in wildly different character types and these will definitely change your thought process.
Even if it was not a conscious choice, the public associates you with someone very fair. What does it do?
If you play a negative role, people associate you with that image, so if the public actually thinks I’m a righteous person, then that’s a good image to convey. But as an actor, I keep experimenting with my roles.
During this pandemic period, many old shows were revived, including Balika Vadhu, but the second season failed to create a similar impact. Why?
It’s nothing new, you know, when you want to recreate something that’s already been very successful. The same goes for movies too. When you make a movie it’s not about making a sequel, there are times when it’s just about using the popularity of the series title. So I think they wanted to create a story with the same content, I won’t say with the same context, but with the same kind of content, where they talk about child marriage and they brought up this issue, but maybe that people had seen the story therefore has no connection with it. Maybe because they loved Balika Vadhu so much and might have seen the old one again during the pandemic too. It completely depends on the taste of the public, it is in his hand.
Would you like to return to TV or focus more on movies and web series?
Right now, I’m completely focused on movies and web series. I just finished three webseries. One of them is called Lalla, it’s a very rough story and I have a very different role. Then there is an inter-relationship drama called Saas Bahu aur Aachar, which is a complex series despite its lighthearted name. I have another series called Bihar Diaries, which is about cops and criminals.
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