Naveen Kasturia would always be counted as one of those people who spearheaded the digital revolution in the entertainment space. In the last couple of years he has, of course, done a lot more. He has appeared in films and several popular web shows, including ‘Thinkistaan’ season 2 which started streaming on MX Player recently. In this interview, he talks about the show, ‘TVF Pitchers’ which turned out to be the turning point in his career, doing a variety of work as an actor, wish to direct a film and more.
The second season of ‘Thinkistaan’ has arrived just a few weeks after the first season started streaming?
Yes, I am glad the second season has arrived just a few weeks after the first season started streaming. We shot the two seasons almost back-to-back. Had we not got a good response, it would have been a problem. Thankfully, the first season was received well and that gave us the confidence to drop the second season just a few weeks after the first season started streaming.
Was preparing for the second season any different from preparing from the first one?
No, as we shot the two seasons back-to-back, the preparation was almost the same. As I play a Hindi copywriter in the show, I had a gentleman coming to my house to polish my Hindi further. Though my Hindi is quite good, I needed to speak in chaste Hindi in a couple of scenes in the show, so I needed to undergo a bit of training.
What was your biggest takeaway from ‘Thinkistaan’ as an actor?
I got to know a lot about the advertising world while working on this show. Our director N. Padmakumar worked in the advertising space for a very long time and he is a reservoir of knowledge as far as this world is concerned.
Recently, we saw you in an episode of the erotic web show ‘Fuh Se Fantasy’. It was a first time you stepped into a space like that.
I always say a ‘yes’ to a project because of its content. I also try to pick up different kind of projects as an actor. I also did an episode for ‘Parchhayee: Ghost Stories By Ruskin Bond’. I feel lucky to have got the opportunity to explore different kind of roles and subjects as an actor.
In an old interview, you had stated that you wanted to become the Woody Allen of India.
(Laughs) Yes, I must have said that as initially my plan was to become a filmmaker and then, perhaps play a part in one of the films I make. I assisted a few directors on their films and then, started acting as I got a few interesting opportunities in that field. There is still a desire to direct a film but I do not think that will happen in the near future.
Do you think ‘TVF Pitchers’ was a turning point in your career?
Yes, definitely the show and the other work we did with TVF changed things for a lot of us. We got a good platform to showcase out talent. The shows did well and that led us to more opportunities.
You have a couple of interesting films coming – ‘Aap Ke Kamre Mein Koi Rehta Hai’ and ‘Man To Man’.
Yes, ‘Man To Man’ is a very interesting film in which I am paired opposite Adah Sharma. Adah plays the role of a person who is born as a male but undergoes sex reassignment surgery to become a woman. The subject is very fresh and I look forward to see how the audience reacts to it. ‘Aap Ke Kamre Mein Koi Rehta Hai’ has been ready for a while now. It is a good film and has some fantastic actors like Sumeet Vyas, Amol Parashar and Swara Bhaskar.