Television star Arjun Bijlani believes digital space has given TV actors an opportunity to step out of their comfort zone and grow as an artiste. In a career spanning 17 years, the 38-year-old actor has appeared in TV shows such as “Left Right Left”, “Miley Jab Hum Tum”, “Meri Aashiqui Tum Se Hi”, “Ishq Mein Marjawan” and “Naagin 3”.
He made his movie debut with "Direct Ishq" (2016) and forayed into digital space last year with mini-series “State of Siege: 26/11”.
Bijlani said like many other television actors OTT space has given him an opportunity to reinvent as a performer and he plans to work more in the medium
“I am happy I did a show like ‘State of Siege’ and there is a lot of stuff to follow now on OTT. The medium has definitely given all of us creative freedom to try newer stuff. I am loving that space and I want to work with as many directors as possible.
"It is giving me an opportunity to reinvent myself, getting out of your comfort zone and trying to do subjects and roles that you think will never come to you,” Bijlani told PTI.
The actor said many genres and concepts are being explored on digital medium, something which is currently difficult to happen on television.
“…Hence a lot of actors are also wanting to explore. However, TV has also changed and improved (with time). I feel as the audience keeps changing accordingly the content will keep changing," he added.
Bijlani, however, believes popular streaming platforms such as Amazon Prime Video and Netflix are yet to warm up to TV actors.
"I am very happy the way things are changing in the entertainment industry. The OTT platforms are casting a lot of television actors, Amazon and Netflix with time will also start opening up for TV actors. They still want a lot of film people,” he said.
The actor will next be seen in the upcoming 11th season of the stunt-based reality show "Khatron Ke Khiladi", hosted by filmmaker Rohit Shetty.
Calling the show an experience of a lifetime, Bijlani said he has come out of it stronger.
“My friends, who had participated in ‘Khatron Ke Khiladi’, had said I must experience this show and that one comes out stronger from it. I must say, it is an experience of a lifetime.
“It is amazing to be part of a show where you get to do such crazy, daredevil stunts. It is very challenging and you are always on the edge,” he said.
Other celebrity contestants who feature on the show are Divyanka Tripathi, Shweta Tiwari, Abhinav Shukla, Vishal Aditya Singh, Sourabh Raaj Jain, Mahek Chahal, Anushka Sen, Sana Makbul, Nikki Tamboli, Varun Sood and singers Rahul Vaidya and Aastha Gill.
The team shot for the new season last month in Cape Town, South Africa, with necessary COVID-19 safety measures.
“Khatron Ke Khiladi” will start airing on Colors channel from July 17.