Paatal Lok’s Abhishek Banerjee on playing Hathoda Tyagi: He’s an intense character, it took a toll on me

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Indian OTT platforms are raising the bar with each passing week by offering more and more exciting content. This week, Anushka Sharma backed Paatal Lok is set to release and the trailer has already generated a massive buzz online. The gritty trailer gives an insight into the sinister characters that are out to assassinate media tycoon Sanjeev Mehra played by Neeraj Kabi. This group of killers is headed by Hathoda Tyagi played by actor Abhishek Banerjee. You may remember Banerjee as the jolly good friend Jaana from Stree. However, the actor revealed that playing such a character took a toll on him. 

Banerjee, also a casting director by profession, has more often than not been cast in roles such as the actor’s best friend. With Paatal Lok, too, he imagined himself as one of the gang members. “Here I was subconsciously putting myself in that position of being the sidekick again, until Sudip Sharma saw Stree and offered me Hathoda Tyagi’s role instead,” Banerjee told Scroll in a recent interview.

Speaking about being typecast, the actor said, “The thing with the film industry is if you become popular in one kind of role, you keep getting cast in the same thing. My first full-fledged role was in Ajji, then I played a bad guy in Phillauri, but they weren’t hits like Stree, which came later. So if Hathoda Tyagi works, you may find me doing dark roles one after another.” 

Playing Hathoda Tyagi, however, was no walk in the park. “All I can tell you is that his name defines his personality. And playing him took a toll on me as he’s a pretty intense character, very different from me. I had to understand his sociopolitical truths, question everything as he did, and then with the answers I found, I put myself on the screen.” Banerjee does look sinister as Hathoda Tyagi and is the highlight in Paatal Lok’s trailer. We cannot wait to see what the actor has in store for us.