Varun Badola’s character as Dev in Star Plus drama Des Mein Niklla Hoga Chand shot him to fame in 2001. He became popular among people, especially for his lead roles in Hindi soap operas. Over the years, the actor performed in many TV shows such as Astitva…Ek Prem Kahani, Banegi Apni Baat, Kutumb and Koshish – Ek Asha.
His role as mentally-ill person in Koshish – Ek Asha made him a household name and he continued to perform in multiple award-winning shows.
However, not many people know that Badola started his career as a director and scriptwriter and assisted in films such as Ramanand Sagar’s Charas and Tigmanshu Dhulia’s Haasil. A Delhi boy, he has completed his schooling from Sardar Patel Vidyalaya and is married to actress Rajeshwari Sachdev.
Besides acting, directing and screenwriting, Badola is a singer and a dancer and was also a contestant of the reality dance show Nach Baliye Season 2.
Badola believes that it is necessary for actors to be in love with the art of storytelling because it encourages artists to work in different mediums.
His new web series, Kohrra, is a crime thriller directed by Randeep Jha. The series premiered on July 15 on Netflix.
In a recent interview with Patriot, Badola spoke about his work.
Q: Tell us more about the series. What kind of role have you played in Kohrra?
A: In Kohrra, I have performed and acted as an uncle of the boy who is murdered and around whom the story revolves. In the series, Vishal Handa act as Paul, Ivantiy Novak as Liam, Barun Sobti as Garundi, Suvinder Vicky as Balbir Singh, Rachel Shelley as Clara, and Manish Chaudhary as Steve Dhillon.
I have worked majorly with Manish Choudhary and not others in this series because my role involved only working with him.
Q: You have worked in many TV shows. Now you are working in a web series. There must be some differences between these, such as how to approach the story or the kind of audience that these mediums target.
A: I am an artist and I am ready to work for any kind of medium, be it television, films or OTT platforms. Even though the mediums differ, what my audience enjoys are my roles in it, I think. So it doesn’t make a major difference for me. The only difference could be between a film or series (episodes). In a film, you are done with the shooting in one go but in a series, you may have a more long-term engagement.
Q: You have worked in a variety of TV shows such as Ek Chabi Pados Mein, Mere Dad Ki Dulhan, and Internet Wala Love. How has your experience been working with different stories?
A: Every serial is different. For instance, I enjoyed working in Ek Chabi Pados Mein, which also got popular among the audience for its simple story. Then Mere Dad Ki Dulhan is a funny and light-hearted show and people loved it for this. Internet Wala Love, on the other hand, was a coming-of-age show about modern days and it clicked with the young generation. Despite the variety, I work very hard in all these shows. The positive response I receive from the audience only adds to this.
Q: Besides acting, you have written the script of Apharan. Would you like to share your experience on that?
A: I love acting in Bollywood films but I have flair for scriptwriting also. I am always very sincere about it and I enjoy it a lot. Regarding Apharan’s script, I wrote it in more than eight months and I am happy that it got the recognition it deserves.
Q: What are your views on those shows or films that only focus on TRP (Target Rating Point)?
A: I am not a fan of them. I feel bad when producers only think of TRP and popularity. Some of them try to show washing powder or other such things in the serials [as advertisement]. This leads to decrease in the quality of content and shows tend to fail.
Q: You have played as a father in Mere Dad Ki Dulhan. Did you like your role?
A: Yes, for me every performance is important. It was a role full of experience. I am very satisfied with the role of a father. I may have to do minimum makeup to look like a real father on screen, but overall it is great.
Q: Any interesting thing you would like to share with our readers?
A: Yes, I still remember when I played a CRPF officer’s role in Your Honor. I had to lose 13 kg to play opposite Jimmy Shergill. That was very tough at that time but I am happy to add that this show went very well.
Q: What are your passions besides acting in films?
A: I love wildlife photography and have a passion for keeping record players. I have a good collection of records.
Q: Any favourite place in Delhi which you used to visit?
A: I love to go to Chanakya cinema and I am thankful that it is still running. In my days in Delhi, it used to be a single screen but it has now been converted into a multiplex. Nonetheless, I enjoy watching films there.
Q: Would you like to share your Delhi memories?
A: Yes, I still remember living in Green Park in Delhi and how my mother used to send me to Babu Market in Sarojini Nagar. That was the time when most of the people went for shopping there. I also love to visit Deer Park and Hauz Khas Village. Delhi has changed a lot now.
Q: Any advice for upcoming artists? Do you think prior education in films helps in the industry?
A: I can only tell young artists that they have to do well while acting, give time, have confidence and work hard. Focus on the script and act accordingly.
About the education part, I did not do any diploma before I got into Bollywood. However, times have changed a lot. I think film and television institutes give basic knowledge to artists and they get confidence from this. So, it helps!