With Uri, Mohit Raina has scripted a seamless transition from screen small to big

As army man Karan Kashyap, the actor had limited screen time but was praised for his performance

By Priyanka Roy
  • Published 31.01.19, 10:47 PM
  • Updated 31.01.19, 10:49 PM
  • 2 mins read
  •  
Mohit Raina as Karan Kashyap in Uri. A still from the film, Uri.

He shot into the spotlight and became an overnight star with his turn in the popular TV series Devon Ke Dev... Mahadev. As army man Karan Kashyap in Uri, Mohit Raina had limited screen time but his act in the film has come in for its fair share of praise. A chat.

Priyanka Roy:

You’ve had a fairy-tale debut with Uri

Mohit Raina:

Frankly, I didn’t expect so much in such little time. When you do any kind of work, you know what the level of appreciation will be like. But this kind of a response I hadn’t ever expected. My phone literally hasn’t stopped ringing since the last 10 days. And I am terribly surprised at that. But I guess that’s the power of cinema… it can touch a chord and can connect with the audience in ways you don’t expect it to be.

Priyanka Roy:

What kind of a chord has your Karan Kashyap struck with the audience?

Mohit Raina:

When you have a character that’s on screen only for a stipulated amount of time, then such an overwhelming response does take you a little aback. Everyone I’ve met after the film has said, ‘We wanted more of you… we were looking out for you… we wish the second half had your character come back in some way’ (laughs).

People have loved the character. The best thing is that this kind of response is not coming from the fraternity, but from people outside who have no idea about the craft of filmmaking, but just react and connect to films emotionally. 

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Priyanka Roy:

Didn’t the length of the role bother you when you signed on?

Mohit Raina:

It didn’t. I knew it would be a special film and given the people who were involved, I was confident of the scale and the reach it would have. I was sure the film and the character would leave an impact. For me, the length of a role has always been secondary. 

Priyanka Roy:

Did the fact that you once wanted to join the army make you do Uri?

Mohit Raina:

That was definitely a reason. I have always been fascinated by the uniform. Before Uri, I did a series which was based on the Saragarhi battle of 1897. I recently finished another series that focuses on the IPS.

With Mouni Roy in Devon Ke Dev ... Mahadev
With Mouni Roy in Devon Ke Dev ... Mahadev A still from the show
Priyanka Roy:

You’ve enjoyed massive popularity on TV. Has that helped in bringing audiences to Uri?

Mohit Raina:

I’ve wanted to start out in films on a clean slate, but the audience naturally connects with me based on the memories they’ve had of me on TV. I look at it as nothing to be embarrassed about; it’s, in fact, a blessing and gives me an upper hand over many others. 

Priyanka Roy:

The predominant chatter a few years ago was that over-exposure on the small screen meant that filmmakers stayed away from you. Has that changed now?

Mohit Raina:

There’s a lot of work going around, irrespective of the medium. If you are good at your business, you will get your due.