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“What is meant to be will find its way”

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In conversation with Shaan Mishra

By Sunita Vijay

Bestowed with good looks, talent, and lucrative opportunities and, as he says, ‘call of destiny that defines your path’, Shaan is neck-deep in the acting realm.

As the world was brought to its knees by the pandemic and all were dismayed with the lockdown in early 2020, Shaan was stuck in a flat in Mumbai, which he’d occupied just a few days before the lockdown commenced. It became his fitness and skill-building zone during the mentally gruelling period. He exuded a strong side of his personality by utilising the confinement time to keep himself in perfect shape and frame for any audition that may come his way. Fortunately, an opportunity knocked at his door in August 2020 from Balaji Production for a lead role in Gandi Baat (Season 5). Within a few days, he was travelling for a shoot 14 hours away from Mumbai. Since then, there has been no looking back.

Shaan Mishra won the ‘Mr Uttarakhand’ title for two consecutive years, 2014 and 2015, and many subtitles like ‘Mr Talented 2015’, ‘Mr Charming 2015’, ‘Mr Bollywood 2016’, and ‘Young Achiever Award’ in 2018 (conducted by Bhaarat Nirman). At the time he was working with the NGO, ‘Nanhi Dunya’.

When asked whether these titles paved the way for him to enter acting, he replies, ‘I never thought of being an actor as no one far and near is in the film industry. My brother and I run two gyms in Delhi. I have been into fitness and my friends and relatives always shower lofty comments regarding my physique and looks. They often suggested I must go the Bollywood way. Maybe their views influenced me to pursue acting. And then, I pursued many theatre, OTT series and daily soap-opera opportunities – in both cameo and lead roles. Now I’m all set for playing the main role in an upcoming film.’

Born and brought up in Doon, having studied in Carman School, Dalanwala, and his parents, Vinay Mishra and Chandra Mishra residing in Jakhan, Shaan’s love for Doon is unfadingly immense.This reflects in his conversation. He grew nostalgic while going down memory lane, recalling fond memories of his childhood spent in Doon, exploring Doon’s picturesque outskirts, and playing cricket with Jubin Nautiyal, the famous name in playback singing in Bollywood.

Shaan is visiting Doon in June with the crew members of his film to be shot in Uttarakhand, to meet CM Dhami for discussions and blessings and to explore shooting sites. ‘I am deeply connected with Uttarakhand. Two personalities from Doon, Alok Ulfat, actor, director and trainer, and journalist and actor Satish Sharma, have had a substantial positive influence on my life. Although my roots are in Rajasthan, I consider myself an Uttarakhandi. I want to promote my state, which has a profound natural richness and can be a valuable addition to a film. I have always been fascinated by Uttarakhand’s forests, rivers and mountains. I incessantly tried to convince the producer to shift the shooting venue from Bhopal to Uttarakhand. Finally, they have agreed to come for a recce for spots and bungalows where shooting may be possible’.

Shaan has been the production manager for several films earlier – Bullett Raja, Yaara, HaayeDil, Ishqeria, a Hollywood film, Land of Gods, and Karan Johar’s Student of the Year, in which he played a friend of Varun Dhawan’s character in the film. He has also acted in a short film by Shubham Sharma, Fall in Friendship, and in many soap operas.

His first big break came with the role of Arjun Pandit in Love Panti, in which he completed 120 plus episodes.

His upcoming series, Enigma, comprising six episodes and NRI Hadsa are ready to be released on Prime and Colors/Voot, respectively, this month.

Everyone has a purpose, and one becomes unstoppable on figuring this out. Uttarakhand is truly a fountainhead of talent with so many names making it big in Bollywood, and Shaan’s the next in the queue.