Rangbaaz starring Saqib Saleem, Aahana Kumra, Tigmanshu Dhulia amongst others enjoyed a triumphant run as it started streaming on ZEE5 in December 2018. The humongous success of the web series was repeated by Rangbaaz Phirse, which premiered in December 2019. Featuring the likes of notable actors Jimmy Sheirgill and Gul Panag in the lead with stellar stints by Sharad Kelkar, Sushant Singh, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub, Spruha Joshi, the digital drama became an instant hit. The crime thriller narrates the rise and fall of a notorious gangster from Rajasthan, Amarpal Singh (Jimmy Sheirgill). In an exclusive, candid conversation, Gul reveals that Jimmy was one of the reasons why she chose to do the series. Read edited excerpts from our interview below:
1. How do you feel with all the good reviews and positive reactions coming your way for Rangbaaz Phirse?
I am very pleased with the way the whole show has been received. I am grateful to the viewers who helped us surpass the high expectations that were from Rangbaaz Phirse.
2. What made you do Rangbaaz Phirse?
I was aware of the success of Rangbaaz. I knew of the writer Siddharth Mishra and his work. When I was told that Rangbaaz Phirse is being mounted by ZEE5, a sequel to their most successful series, I knew I had to be a part of it. Even before hearing out what my complete character was, I had mentally decided that this is an incredible franchise to be a part of. I’d be very very happy. Each piece of information came my way, my decision to be a part of it became stronger and stronger. The fact that Jimmy Sheirgill was a part of it, the platform was very clear they want to make Rangbaaz Phirse bigger and better. All these were motivation enough for me.
3. Rangbaaz Phirse is centered around #NotBornACriminal. Do you believe so?
The hashtag is very apt because I fundamentally don’t think anyone is born a criminal. You cannot really imagine a person will grow up to be a criminal. Circumstances do shape you, life does shape you. More often things don’t go according to plan. We are all products of our circumstances. We set out to do something and due to circumstances, the element of choice is taken away from us. The only choice you have at that point is to take the path which you did not plan to take.
4. Tell us about your experience of working with Jimmy Sheirgill.
Jimmy is a very fine actor. His work is something I have followed from the very beginning. I have bunked college to watch his film. And interestingly, I had to watch the same film again with my parents and pretend that I am watching it for the first time. I think he has made some really good decisions in his career. Besides, he is so endearing as an actor. As a student, a father, a husband, even as a gangster, he is so believable. You feel for him in every role he plays. It’s a tough task if you play so many roles in a particular series. I think it has always been his hallmark, all his characters are just so believable. Amarpal Singh is a very well written character.
5. If you had to describe him in one word, what would it be?
Quiet. Jimmy doesn’t talk a lot.
Catch Vikrant Massey play the role of Arjun Kapoor’s best friend in Half Girlfriend, now streaming on ZEE5.