Roshan Mathew set to make Bollywood début with Anurag Kashyap’s Netflix original ‘Choked’

Roshan Mathew

Roshan Mathew   | Photo Credit: Sagnik Ganguly

The young actor plays a musician who moves to Mumbai to follow his dreams in Choked: Paisa Bolta Hai that premières on Netflix on June 5


Despite the lockdown blues, Mollywood actor Roshan Mathew now has a good reason to cheer. He is all set to mark his Bollywood début with the Anurag Kashyap-directed Netflix original Choked: Paisa Bolta Hai. The streaming service major announced on Tuesday that Choked will première on the platform on June 5.

"It's really an exciting break for me. Choked revolves around a middle-class couple in Mumbai, both of whom struggle in their own ways. I play Sushanth Pillai, who aspires to make it big as a musician, specifically as a guitarist, one day. He's actually a Tamilian who found his way to the big city of Mumbai looking for a breakthrough. We see him coping with his failures and insecurities," says Roshan over phone from Kochi about his character in the film.


Bollywood actor Saiyami Kher plays the role of his wife, Saritha, and Roshan says perhaps Choked is more about Saritha's struggles than Sushanth's" when seen from a broader perspective. "She has a day job, which is not very easy on her. But, one day, the lives of the couple turns on its head when Saritha starts discovering money in a drain pipe," says Roshan, who was last seen on the big screen in Kappela, whose theatre run was cut short by the COVID-19 pandemic. Before that, Roshan was nited for his performance as a deaf-mute in the Geethu Mohandas-directed Nivin Pauly-starrer Moothon, which premierd at the Toronto International Film festival.

First-look poster of ‘Choked: Paisa Bolta Hai’

First-look poster of ‘Choked: Paisa Bolta Hai’   | Photo Credit: Netflix

Describing Choked as a "plot-driven" film, Roshan says most of the action in Choked happens in a poky apartment in modern-day Mumbai. Others in the cast include Amrutha Subash, Rajshri Deshpande, Upendra Limaye, Tushar Dalvi.

Roshan, who entered the tinsel town through theatre, says his role in Choked is "different" from the ones he has essayed before. "If you take away all the frills associated with the movie, I don't remember having played such a dependent person who, in fact, doesn't want to be that. Saritha is the sole breadwinner of the family and we get to see see how that ratchets up his insecurities and affects his personality, both as an artiste and as a spouse. It's about the power play within a house," he says.

Memorable experience

Roshan says that working with an ace director like Anurag Kashyap (who was co-producer of Moothon) has "perhaps been my most memorable filmmaking experience" so far. "I wasn't directly in contact with AK but I was surprised when he gave me a call after seeing my performance in Moothon at the editing table. In the same the conversation, he spoke about the script of Choked, expressing his interest in casting me," says the 28-year-old.

Choked employs sync sound and Roshan says dialogue delivery in Hindi wasn't hard. "I'm quite fluent in Hindi anyway as I had spent a few years in Mumbai earlier. Also, the fact that the character of Sushanth, a South Indian who migrated to Mumbai, helped my cause. My pronunciation perfectly fit my role," he says with a chuckle.

With the push for direct OTT releases gaining momentum and popularity, especially in the context of the lockdown when cinema halls remain shut, Roshan feels the trend is here to stay. "Choked was an OTT film right from its conception. However, I feel that some films do offer a better viewing experience in theatres and that cinema halls will never lose their charm. However, in a situation such as this (lockdown), it make sense to look at OTT platforms and it's certainly a part of the future," he says. Roshan's Kappela too will be streaming on Netflix soon.

Roshan is also set to mark his début in Tamil with the Vikram-starrer Cobra, which is in development.

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Printable version | Jul 10, 2020 3:45:27 PM |

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