Where there is a hero, there is a villain. For years Vishwajeet Pradhan has been doing negative performances. Having done films like “Yalgar”, “Raaz”, “Zeher”, “No Problem”, “Karam” and “Lamha”, he is one of those who makes a hero look good. Once a regular in Mahesh Bhatt films, lately he was noticed for his role of S.S.P Brahmanand Jakhar in “Maryada-Lekin Kab Tak” on Star Plus. “Television demands continuity and more work month after month. One has to also maintain quality as it reaches not just India but UK, Canada, Pakistan and Dubai as well. It is very powerful. And the risk of flopping like a film is also not there!” says Pradhan.
You made quite an impact in “Maryada”
It was one of the best roles I have done so far. I didn’t do TV earlier. It was like, “Why should film people do television,” but I revised my opinion. I was the central character. I was visible and got an opportunity to play a role for two years.
You were typecast as a villain early in your career.
I started my career with “Fauji” but I got my big break when Feroz Khan picked me to play a villain in “Yalgaar”. My character Jai Chand was appreciated a lot. And the industry tagged me as villain.
Later I got to play some positive role too like in films like “Fareb” and “Dastak”. In “Style” I played a comic role. I also played eunuch in “Shabnam Mausi” where I wore sari, put bindi and my character had a transition from negative to positive.
Do you find television different? How do you see the change in villainous roles over the years?
There was a time when villains were stylised as very fashionable with gelled hair, girls in arms and cigar in mouth but now films have come closer to the reality. Realism has entered our industry. This is a welcome change as good stories are being made. Earlier Raj Kumar and Shatrughan Sinha were the same whether they played a rich boy or a poor one. But now character is more important than the actor’s personality. Actors like Kay Kay and Irfan Khan are getting important characters.
You campaigned for Akhilesh Yadav in the UP elections. Any political ambitions?
My father was into politics. After his death things got slow. We were meeting different parties and everywhere I heard people grumbling and cursing politics and the state of the nation. I made an effort and I am trying to fulfil my social responsibility. But my daal-roti is film and television.
I am shooting for “Sher” with Sanjay Dutt and Vivek Oberoi. I am also shooting for another film, “Amma Ki Baoli”, in Bhopal. One of my films, “Kabhi Dilli Kabhi Lahore”, is in the post-production stage. As an actor I want more and more challenges, I want to reinvent myself.