Sharman Joshi on casting couch: ‘It is very tough to pick someone up who is powerful and rich’

Jun 25, 2023 07:20 AM IST

Sharman Joshi talks to HT about his web series Kafas, dealing with a child victim of sexual abuse, and reuniting with Aamir Khan, R Madhavan for Dream11 ads.

Weeks after being seen in several fun TV commercials with his 3 Idiots co-stars Aamir Khan and R Madhavan, Sharman Joshi is back on the small screen with his web show, Kafas. This time, he plays the father of a child artist who has been a victim of sexual abuse at work. And its his 3 Idiots co-star Mona Singh, who plays his wife in the 6-episode series. Interestingly, the show touches upon the topic of casting couch about which Sharman says it's more of an individual choice to fall for it or say no to it. Also read: Mona Singh: I have been spoiled rotten in this industry for choices

Sharman Joshi in a still from Kafas.
Sharman Joshi in a still from Kafas.

In an interview with Hindustan Times, Sharman Joshi opens up about the show and also stresses the right way to handle a young victim of sexual abuse. He also shares his experience of shooting the fun Dream11 ads and expresses his wish to feature in the next Golmaal. Excerpts:

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What exactly is Kafas?

Kafas literally means a cage. Kafas is about a family struck by a tragedy and they choose to take hush money. One needs to watch to know if they come out of it or not. It's a family drama and I very excellent one in the family space myself. I am very proud and happy to be a part of the show.

Can a person, especially a child artist or a youngster really say no to casting couch?

I don't have my doubts about the possibilities of casting couch. There are many youngsters who don't want to go down that part and there are many who are comfortable with it.

How difficult can it be to take an action against a big name like as seen in the show?

It is as difficult as it has been shown in the show. Its a David versus Goliath kind of a fight. It is very, very tough to pick someone up who is very powerful and rich. It becomes a very, very undaunting task in terms of expenses, in terms of emotional strength. Financial and emotional strength you don't really have because you have never been attacked by such situations. Emotionally also when they exploit you, they are aware of the fact that if they do get in trouble, they have the highest ones to help them swing out of it.

How the parents should handle a child victim of sexual abuse?

Like each individual parent, there is no standard format to it. In a real-life situation, I would consult the professional as well as of course be there by my child all the time till I feel my child has gotten control over his or her emotions. So it's a dual approach because I think in situations such as these, you need a professional to help you, to guide you, to cope with the trauma because it's not easy for the parents also and then to guide the parents in terms of how to be with the child. Ideally, professionals like psychiatrists or psychologists have so much experience with these cases that the experience would be very, very helpful.

Do you have a memorable moment from the shooting of the Sony LIV show?

The entire shooting of the show has been a really joyous journey for me because it has been written very beautifully. The characters, situations, complexities of the characters have been so well etched out and delved into. And it was so much fun in portraying all of it. And its even more fun when you have a talented actor like Mona Singh by your side. She brings out the best in you.

And of course, a director like Sahil Sangha who portrays so many intricacies, subtleties of the character, dynamics; he knew it like the back of his hand. He was very clear about what he wanted, he works with such clarity, he has a full idea of how he wants to have the character portray the emotions at a given point of time. He makes it very easy for the actor. Sahil gave me pointers which strengthened my faith in him. I started trusting him blindly and whatever he wanted was what I tried to deliver and hopefully people will also enjoy watching it.

What is your working type, do you like incorporating your ideas or you are a director's actor?

The script is the bible. Follow the script and the director, I am the director's actor for sure. Whatever the director tells me to do, I do. Apart from that, what I can do I do. If the director approves, we keep it. If he doesn't, we move on. I personally also tried to bring something to the table.

You, Aamir Khan and R Madhavan recently featured in multiple Dream11 commercials. Will you ever come together again for a film?

I would love to, request Rajkumar Hirani sir to make one. Karte hain turant (let's do it immediately). It was nostalgia at the next level. First of all, me, Aamir and Madhavan met, bahut sari baatein (chats), yaadein (memories). We spent time with Rohit Sharma, Hardik Pandya, spoke to them about the pressure they face. We shared about each other's work and had a lovely time. It was shot over three days. We were just joking and laughing around, just like friends can insult each other. But it's all in fun.

You recently played a pregnant man in a Gujarati film, Congratulations. You seem to be experimenting with your projects now. Which is your favourite genre?

I need to constantly do something which is away from what I have done, which is out-of-the-box. That is what excites me.

Did you ever try to return to the Golmaal franchise?

I will want to be a part of the next installment whenever it is made.

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