The occasional Hollywood import to India – actor Omi Vaidya known as the lovable Chatur Ramalingam from 3 Idiots re-enters the Indian scene with the new season of his web series called Metro Park – Quarantine Edition. Metro park came last year and was rather successful.
Omi plays the role of Kannan in the show along with Ranvir Shorey, Pitobash and Purbi Joshi among others. “If you know Kannan, he’s a very anxious uptight fellow. He’s pretty paranoid and the paranoia is a part of our lives now and people are uncomfortable staying more than 6 feet away wearing full head masks – distrusting their own family because of exposure and stuff. That whole personality is sort of shown in Kannan,” says Omi who also got his wife to handle the camera when he was acting as all the actors had to get their videos shot at home. “It was an experience,” recollects the actor.
Omi was last seen in the Bollywood film Blackmail playing a character called Boss DK. He played late actor Irrfan Khan’s boss who runs a toilet paper manufacturing company.
The actor remembers the time when he worked with Irrfan in his last Bollywood appearance. “Blackmail was the last Bollywood movie in which I acted with the wonderful Irrfan. You watch a lot of actor work when you come on set, They sort of meet your expectation of what you’re going to see – they’re loud, they’re big and they perform in a way that makes sense but Irfan was very different. He was really quiet. He didn’t really talk to anyone. He was focused on the work and the way that he acted was something very unexpected. Many a time, he didn’t really know his lines and I wondered why doesn’t he know his lines? He had one word – something like ‘achcha’ and he didn’t know what it was and I wondered why would he do this? I am the one struggling with Hindi here and why wouldn’t he? The reason I realised is that he wanted to have a natural reaction to what I was saying. When you already know what you’re going to say and you have a predetermined idea of how you’re going to say it. But when you don’t know your line and you just hear somebody talking, you naturally react and that was very interesting to see. It reminded me of how I worked in The Office with Steve Carell. It reminded me of the way he worked, because he also would just not know his lines and it didn’t really make sense in the scene but when you watched the replay you would go ‘achcha. this is a genius right here’!” recollects Omi.