Actor Vivek Anand Mishra kicked-off his acting career in 2016, but TV enthusiasts finally got to know him after he scored an important part in Star Bharat’s successful show Radha Krishn, where he delivered an entrancing performance as Bhairav. There has been no looking back ever since starring in the mythological television series by Siddharth Kumar Tewary.
Mishra recently spoke to BollywoodMDB about his initial days, his journey from a small village in Madhya Pradesh to the maximum city of Mumbai, the projects that he has done so far and, of course, the upcoming ones. The actor also revealed why he never kept a second career option. Excerpts from an exclusive interview…
Where do you come from?
There is a small town in Madhya Pradesh called Satna. My hometown is a few kilometres away from Satna. It is called Samariya. I come from a place where nobody had anything to do with the entertainment industry at that time. I recently got to know that Kumud Mishraji comes from around the same area as I do.
When did the acting bug bite you?
I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life until seventh grade. It was around 2009 when I happened to watch Akshay Kumar’s Kambakkht Ishq on television. I was reading and watching the film at the same time. I thought I would switch it off immediately when my father reached home. While watching the film, I felt a certain kind of spark within me. You can call it destiny. After a certain point, our destiny sort of leads us to a career path that we are destined to pursue. That was the day when I realised that perhaps acting was my true calling.
What happened next?
I do not come from a very financially strong background, so there was no chance of my parents giving me money to land in Mumbai and begin my struggle. Joining an acting course was also not possible. A couple of years passed, and when I grew a little older, I went up to my father and said, "Papa, I want to go out." Bhopal was the only city where I could go and find ways to go to Mumbai. So, I shifted my base to Bhopal, where I met my theatre Guru, Mr. Balen Singh. I did theatre with him for four years. After completing college and theatre, I found myself asking, ‘What’s next?’ I did not want to do a 9-5 job at any cost. I got some help from my father and shifted to Mumbai in 2016.
What was the first project that you bagged after landing in Mumbai?
The first show that I bagged was Manda Har Yug Mein It was for DD National. I got the part after three months of struggle in Mumbai. That’s how I began my journey as an actor.
How was the journey post Manda Har Yug Mein?
Manda Har Yug Mein ran for a couple of months. After it ended, another period of struggle began. It was a DD National show, so you can imagine it did not create the kind of impact that would have helped me bag my next show immediately. Survival in a city like Mumbai is very difficult. So, for survival, I started doing episodic shows like Savdhaan India, Crime Patrol, etc. Those shows did not help me professionally either.
How did you come about being a part of Radha Krishn?
After doing episodic shows for almost two years, I landed Radha Krishn, which aired on Star Bharat. I played the character of Bhairav on the show. It helped me acquire some sort of popularity. I won’t say it changed my life overnight, but it did help me boost my confidence.
I again did a few shows for DD National, one of them being Kahani Veer Krantikarion Ki, where I did 30-35 episodes as an actor. There was also a show where I played the second lead for a couple of episodes.
You have been in some films as well. Tell us about them.
Yes, I have done a film with Ravi Kishanji. It is a biopic of Osho. It has not yet been released. It has gone to the censor. I played Bhagat Singh in a recently released film called Hero Of Nation Chandra Shekhar Azad. For some reason, it was not released in Maharashtra. The makers could release it in states like Punjab, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, etc. In a film, played Vidya Sagar Maharaj, the famous Jain guru. It might hit theatres in a month or so. There is one more upcoming project wherein I am playing Laxman. It is basically a series called Jai Ma Vaishno Devi.
How difficult was the entire COVID period for you as an artist?
It was a tough period for every one of us. It would have been tougher if only the entertainment industry had stopped working. Since it was a pandemic, the entire world had come to a halt. So, we artists consoled ourselves thinking not just us everybody is the world is going through the same thing. The only thing that bothered me was that we lost two precious years to the pandemic. We could have done so many great things in these years. But better late than never! Things are finally getting back to normal. Our lives are getting back on track. So, it is a happy feeling. Things have started in full motion again.
How were your struggle days like in Mumbai? Did you ever lose hope and thought of going back to your hometown?
Initially, I thought about this almost every single day (laughs). I would leave home early in the morning and go to Versova, Seven Bungalows, or Aram Nagar for auditions. When I was in my hometown, I had a bike to travel around. I was not used to travelling by buses, so I would go to these places where auditions happened by walking. By the time I would return home, I would be completely exhausted. I would have tears deep down my eyes, but I never showed them to anyone. I had no contacts. I knew nobody. I was completely on my own. But I had no second option. I never kept a second option because all I wanted was to act. I never kept myself in confusion. I was very clear that I wanted to be an actor.
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