Actor Satyajeet Dubey takes us back to the Mahabharata era with the sci-fi comedy-drama Maharaj Ki Jai How
SATYAJEET DUBEY IS known to be picky about the projects he accepts. In his nine-year-long acting career he drew attention right from his debut film Always Kabhi Kabhi in 2011 to the historical series Jhansi Ki Rani, among others. Now on board Star Plus’s Maharaj Ki Jai Ho that is also streaming on Disney+Hotstar, Dubey agrees that the decision was made after much deliberation. The Mumbai-based 29-year-old actor was drawn to David Polycarp’s script and the humour in his character, Sanjay. The 50-episode series also stars Rajesh Kumar, Ashwin Mushran and Aakash Dabhade. In a candid chat, the Chhattisgarh-born actor talks about being drawn towards finely executed scripts and why he would like to travel to the age of Ashoka, Chandragupta Maurya and Alexander.
How did you get on board Maharaj Ki Jai Ho?
I was quite reluctant to take up the role at first because I was never keen on doing a TV show. Also, I knew I was not cut out for a TV format. But when I was informed that the writer was from a theatre background, I thought of giving it a shot. When David Polycarp read the script I found the character to be genuinely funny and the story which is a sweet blend of comedy, sci-fi, romance and drama, got me hooked. Also, I had just finished shooting an emotionally exhausting character in Nikhil Adwani’s upcoming web series, also starring Konkana Sen Sharma and Mohit Raina, so I was looking for something light and interesting.
Tell us about the character Sanjay?
He is a pickpocket, a smooth talker with good looks. He is like Delhi’s Charles Shobhraj. This is my ode to all Govinda films and also classics like Andaaz Apna Apna where the conman is a crook but cute and lovable. Sanjay accidentally travels to 4,000 BC in Hastinapur during the time of Mahabharata and is seen giving contemporary ideas like demonetisation to solve issues instead of going for war.
Since the series is about time travel, is there any particular era you would like to travel?
I am fascinated by history and keep reading about different civilizations. I would like to know what it was like during the time of Ashoka, Chandragupta Maurya and Alexandra and what techniques did they use to build the marvellous architectures that they left behind. I also keep watching different documentaries.
Which is your favourite time travel film/ series?
The first one has to be Back to the Future and then The Time Traveller’s Wife. And how can I forget Jumanji!
What kind of roles are you looking for in future?
I have been quite selective about my projects from the very star t. Irrespective of the platform, I look for interesting scripts where the execution is top of the game.
What is keeping you busy during the lockdown?
I am trying to feed my brain by reading books that include Bhawani Prasad Mishra’s poetry, which is so relevant in today’s time. Also, I am writing a lot of stuff, of which some are very personal and I am sharing some on my Instagram account.