Neil Bhoopalam and Parul Gulati reveal why they chose to be part of The Raikar Case
It's the ideal setting. There’s a huge bungalow and an apparently happy family lives in it. But just when everything seems perfect, something goes wrong. The youngest member of the Raikar family, Tarun, commits suicide.
He jumps off a cliff even as his cousin, Etasha, attempts to stop him. This is the premise of The Raikar Case, the newest web series to go on air on Voot Select. Directed by Aditya Sarpotdar (a well-known name in the Marathi film industry) the show, set in Goa, stars respected names such as Atul Kulkarni, Ashwini Bhave and Neil Bhoopalam, and popular television actors like Parul Gulati and Kunal Karan Kapoor. A thriller, it is a seven-episode series that delves into the suspense genre right from its first episode. Tarun reveals that his family is responsible for this extreme step, just before he jumps to his death, and that’s where it all begins.
Neil is cast as the Superintendent of Police, John Pereira, who is investigating the case and Parul plays the role of the cousin Etasha. The former, who has often played light-hearted romantic roles, takes on the tough character of a cop. “I had never played a police officer, so I was quite happy to try this role. In fact, I was reading Lee Child’s Worth Dying For (the 15th book in the Jack Reacher series of thrillers) and I was mentally in the zone for a thriller, and honestly, any shoot that takes me to Goa, I just say ‘yes’ to it,” quips Neil. The actor also reveals he was quite impressed with Akshaye Khanna’s role in Ittefaq and Nana Patekar’s performance in Ab Tak Chhappan, and this was another reason that prompted him to take up the role of John Pereira. “I was drawn to my role further because of the plot. The story about this family living in Goa, how everyone is aspiring to grow, the complex relationships — everything was quite engaging. There was something about the backdrop which was quite similar to the recently released film Knives Out,” he offers.
While Neil’s motivation was to play a cop’s role, Parul agreed to portray Etasha because she had never been part of any family drama or thriller. “Etasha is the second youngest member of this dysfunctional family. On the face of it, it appears like a loving family and that nothing can ever go wrong with its members. But when the youngest brother commits suicide, things come out in the open,” she says.
Parul who has earlier acted in P.O.W. - Bandi Yuddh Ke, Haq Se and Selection Day, says it was an enriching experience to act in this series with such a motley group of acclaimed actors. “I remember, my first scene was with Atul sir and I was slightly intimidated. But, the joy of acting with experienced actors is that they make the process easy.
Through the shoot, I asked him and others a lot of questions about their experience and learnt a lot from them,” says Parul, signing off.
Favourite author: Lee Child
Currently reading: The Godfather. I also recently read a play that’s an adaptation of the book The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.
Favourite fictional detective: Karamchand
If stuck on an island: I want the company of a philosopher, a scientist, a master chef and a spokesperson.
Your next projects: I am working on an online project with Atul Kumar. It’s a play called Doppelganger. I will begin shooting Four More Shots Season 3 shortly.
Favourite author or playwright: Aaron Sorkin
Favourite fictional detective: Byomkesh Bakshi
Last holiday destination: Greece
A destination that lived up to its hype: Iceland. I loved the view of the Northern Lights.
Currently binge-watching: Money Heist
Streaming on Voot Select.