Danish Sait is going to be playing an assassin next!
He’s pulled off 2,400 pranks in eight years on air. But ahead of April Fool’s Day, Danish Sait takes the spotlight off his usual gags and directs our attention to something much bigger — the Lok Sabha elections. “It’s funny that this April is so close to the beginning of the ultimate Fool’s Day prank that our politicians have been playing since independence,” says the presenter and actor, on the heels of a brand new show in the run-up to the elections, titled Need To Know, alongside co-host Anu Menon. Available on the Daily Hunt app, in bite-sized 10-minute episodes, Danish tells us the show is about, “Indian politics — past, present, and future — by way of everything from
pronunciation to trivia, covering all 29 states.”
Nograj is back
Although he is careful to clarify that he isn’t taking a dig at any political party, Danish does not shy away from a serious message: “It’s okay to be fooled on the phone or to be a part of a programme where they make a bakra (joke) out of you, but don’t be fooled by false promises or fake news on WhatsApp.
When it comes to the elections, people need to vote, and that’s the most important thing this April.”
It’s okay to be fooled on a show, but don’t be fooled by false
promises or fake news. Get out there and vote!
— Danish Sait
For once, we are hearing straight from the man, not one of his many characters that have since his radio days extended to YouTube videos and film. Speaking of which, Danish just dropped the announcement on social media that the script for a sequel of Humble Politician Nograj is ready. And the news has sent fans into a tizzy.
Off the pitch
What’s it been like traveling with RCB?
Mostly, we do our own thing. But I’ve had some enriching conversations with some of the players. I once saw AB de Villiers walk down a hotel lobby with a bunch of papers in his hand. When I asked him what they were, he told me that he was studying property law! Another time, I had a chat with Virat about him losing his father, and despite that, going out there and scoring a 100 in a Ranji game...
Ever had a date where the girl didn’t get your jokes?
Yes! And we didn’t get along. When it comes to relationships, I think liking the person’s habits are very important.
You haven’t given us any new pranks in a while. Is that chapter closed?
I think Truecaller has ruined pranked for everyone! And, having programmed 4,800 minutes of content (that’s 40 movies) — somewhere, there is a bit of fatigue as well. But never say never!
Asgar takes Bengaluru
That apart, the 31-year-old has a spree of projects ready to go, including a new comedy show on Amazon Prime, shot in Uttarakhand, where he plays an assassin (directed by Anubhuti Kashyap) and a new movie with his much-loved auto driver character Asgar in the lead, which was shot ‘in the heartland of the madness — Shivaji Nagar, Bengaluru’. Fun fact, while he was shooting under the direction of Kashyap (sister of Anurag Kashyap), Danish’s sister (Kubbra Sait) worked with Anurag Kashyap for Sacred Games.
With the IPL underway, he is also a presenter in not one, but two IPL specials. Danish tells us, “It’s going to be my fifth year of travelling with the Royal Challengers Bangalore for RCB Insider as
Mr Nags.” If you haven’t encountered Nags before, the character is known for his atrocious spellings (he thinks he is so ‘grate’) and hilarious efforts at trying to one-up Virat on the pitch!
The other IPL show, which is already underway is Cric Buzz’s Stranger XI, where Danish plays host and chats up armchair experts on cricket. “We went into the nooks and crannies of Bengaluru and Mumbai, because like the show name, we had to find people who were strange,” he shares with a laugh. All of this is not counting his place on an august panel of experts like Harsha Bhogle and Ajay Jadeja for pre- and post-match analyses through the season, before leaving to England for the World Cup.
Chaos and a cat
From Bengaluru boy next door to jet-setting comic, TV host and actor — Danish is living the dream. But reveling in the crowds, the rush, the show that doesn’t stop ended up taking its toll when he fell into depression.
“The past year has seen quite a bit of turmoil in terms of my relationships and performing in a different city every night, donning different hats,” Danish opens up. And since then, he lets on that he has been doing a lot of introspection.
“I think what I’ve learned from these experiences is that we’re all working, we’re all hustling, trying to do 10 different things at the same time. But when you get back home, it’s you to yourself and all the madness stays out of home,” relates the actor.
Incidentally, Danish shares his Frazer town apartment with a Persian cat named Red. We’re candidly told that the feline is part-flatmate, part-therapist.
“For the last one year, I’ve been talking to Red, and I realised that he doesn’t reply,” Danish shares with us, in jest. “So I make up the responses and do different voices as we go. I think my cat is the ultimate prankster, because he’s too friendly to be a cat, he’s actually a dog!”
firstname.lastname@example.org | @brightasunshine