Akshay Waghmare’s tryst with period cinema

Actor Akshay Waghmare is used to the attention he receives for his work in films and on television, too. However, the Ti Phulrani actor was taken by surprise when his fans, friends and acquaintances showered him with praises for his look as Koyaji Bandal in his latest upcoming film.

Akshay will be seen in Digpal Lanjekar’s Fatteshikast, where he plays Koyaji Bandal, a brave maval from Shivaji’s times. The actor shares, “When Digpal called me regarding the role, I thought he was joking. I asked him not to pull my leg. He then said that he was serious about casting me and was sure I would fit the bill.”

Earlier, Akshay had auditioned for Farzand, Digpal’s directorial debut, but things didn’t work out. He says, “The credit for Bandal’s character goes to Digpal and his team. I was unsure of the role, as it is something out of my comfort zone and something I had never attempted. However, Digpal trusted his instincts and trained me accordingly.”

The actor first underwent training to get the dialect and pronunciations right. The film is based during the time of Shivaji, so the mavals had a peculiar way of speaking. He says, “I had to get the body posture and language right. I also took sword and daan pata training. We wanted it to look as authentic as it could.”

After the appearance, he had to train to sound like a soldier. He adds, “Digpal worked hard to ensure I didn’t come across as a novice. He would send me voice notes. And I also read the script for hours. The idea was to get the dialect right. When Digpal heard me a few days later, he was happy with it.”

Akshay has been receiving several congratulatory messages for his first look, which surprised him a bit. “The feedback is amazing. To start with, people were shocked to see me in a non-glamorous and era-based look. They are used to seeing me playing young, boy-next-door characters. I am really touched with the appreciation coming in from various regional industries as well,” he says.

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