Loop Laapeta fame Manik Papneja to make big screen debut with Dono

Actor Manik Papneja opens up on his role and working experience with Rajveer Deol in the film Dono 
Manik Papneja
Manik Papneja

Actor Manik Papneja, who was previously seen in projects such as Made in Heaven on Amazon Prime, Netflix’s Loop Laapeta, Zee5’s Kaun Banega Shikharwati and Baked on Jio Cinema; is all set to make his big screen debut with film Dono, directed by debutant Avnish Barjatya, son of Sooraj Barjatya. The film also marks the Bollywood debut of Rajveer Deol and Paloma Dhillon, and is slated for release on October

The actor gets candid about his character and working experience in the film.

 “I play the role of Gopal aka Gappu, who is the life of the party. The only thing he loves more that the attention from the ladies is his chaddi buddy Dev (Rajveer). For Gopal I wanted to be a friend we all have in our lives who annoys and irritates us when we are with them but miss tremendously when they aren’t around. Channelling different elements and quirks of different friends that I have might have helped. Plus, I also think Avnish Barjatiya as a director knew exactly what he wanted from Gopal and that helped.”

Sharing about how he prepped for the role, he says, “I remember reading the scenes for the audition and immediately feeling like this film is something I should be a part of. Several months went by and I didn’t hear back. I genuinely thought it’s gone to someone else. Then one day, I got called into the Rajshri office for a chat and a reading with Avnish Barjatya. I read a few scenes with Rajveer, which was great. I felt good after the reading but didn’t want to have any expectations. Surprisingly, before I could get home I got a call offering me the part. So, I guess It went well.”

Describing his experience working with Rajveer Deol and Paloma Dhillon, he says, “It was a delight. Rajveer is an extremely generous co-actor. He was always ready to play around with the lines and improvise if the scene needed it. He carried that same sense of ease of camera and we had a great time shooting together. Paloma and I didn’t have a lot of scenes together but I wish we did. From whatever little I got to see she seemed so effortless and it was wonderful to watch her perform Meghna. She’s also a fantastic dancer!"

Speaking about his experience working with director Avinash, he says, “Though this is Avnish's directorial debut he was completely in control. He is already a pro. It was thoroughly enjoyable working with him. Avnish was extremely patient and with a smile entertained any and all questions I had about my character or the script in general. I hope I get to work with him again soon.”

Talking about the USP of the film, he adds, “In my opinion, the film is a beautiful portrayal of a balance between the old and the new, between the traditional and modern and what it takes to create harmony between the two. It’s about accepting the circumstances you can’t change and changing what’s in your control. The film also looks into how our generation views weddings. The writers, Avinash and Manu, have managed to encapsulate modern day India and how the youth are changing the wedding landscape while embracing tradition.”

Ask him what he enjoy most about acting, and he is quick to add, “The part where I get to tell a story. I’ve always wanted to act and have been doing it since I was very young. Nothing gives me as much joy as playing a character that has something to convey and his own story to tell. The introvert in me has always found it easier to express himself on stage or on camera. I think I also enjoy the nervousness that surrounds a performance and channeling it into a role always gives me a high.”


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