Till a few years ago, there used to be a wide gap between the small screen and the silver screen. Then, a handful of actors jumped this chasm.
The interesting part is, all these actors started their journey in Delhi, after which they headed to television and have now landed meaty roles in Bollywood.
While Sushant Singh Rajput, Manish Paul, Barun Sobti and Pulkit Samrat completed their education in Delhi, Ayushmann Khurrana and Rajeev Khandelwal came to the city to pursue theatre and try out the acting arena.
After working for daily soaps, reality shows and as TV hosts, they exited the small screen at the peak of their careers and ventured into Bollywood.
Manish, who has recently made his acting debut with Mickey Virus, was best known for his impromptu hosting skills. His stint as the host of Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa fetched him accolades. Manish was born on August 3, 1981. He started out as a radio jockey after completing his studies in Delhi. He got his first break as the host of a weekly show called Sunday Tango. The actor then moved on to act in daily soaps such as Ghost Bana Dost before taking up stand-up comedy and hosting reality shows like India’s Got Talent.
After winning MTV Roadies Season 2, Ayushmann finished his studies and worked as a radio jockey in Delhi. After his radio stint, he moved on to become a VJ on MTV. He later turned a TV host with the reality show, India’s Got Talent. He was the anchor of the singing reality show, Music Ka Maha Muqqabla, and also became part of the anchoring team of a show for a domestic T20 cricket tournament, and Just Dance. His debut film, Vicky Donor (2012), was a hit. He also did a movie called Nautanki Saala.
He shot to fame as Arnav Singh Raizada — the male lead character in the TV series, Iss Pyaar Ko Kya Naam Doon. His pairing with Sanaya Irani was highly admired by the audiences. Born in Delhi on August 21, 1984, he completed his education in the capital. He worked as an operations manager at a telecom company for seven years and pursued modelling simultaneously. After shifting base to Mumbai, Barun’s TV career kickstarted with the serial, Shraddha. He is also recognised for playing the lead role of Shravan Jaiswal, in the serial Baat Hamari Pakki Hai.
He is best known for playing the character of Lakshya Virani in the popular show, Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi. Born in Delhi on December 29, 1983, Pulkit did his first modelling assignment for Asian Paints after which he shifted to Mumbai in 2005. He did an acting course with Kishore Namit Kapoor after which he made his TV debut in 2006. Pulkit also did a musical show called Taj Express. He made his film debut with Bittoo Boss (2012), and thereafter, did Fukrey, which was a hit.
Sushant Singh Rajput
Born on January 21, 1986, Sushant and his family, shifted to Delhi from Patna in the early 2000s. He was good at studies and was pursuing engineering from one of the premiere institutes, but acting was his ultimate goal. He dropped out of college to pursue his passion. He joined Shiamak Davar’s dancing academy and Barry John’s theatre classes. He got famous with the daily soap, Pavitra Rishta. He was also one of the finalists in the dance reality show, Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa. He made his film debut in Kai Po Che this year, followed by Shuddh Desi Romance in September.
After finishing his schooling, the actor worked as a scriptwriter and a documentary film-maker in Delhi. He directed a fiction series for Doordarshan, called Samarpan, and simultaneously performed for many theatre productions. He got famous as Sujal with the daily soap Kahiin To Hoga. He also did other shows, like Kya Hadsaa Kya Haqeeqat and Left Right Left. He has also appeared in films like Aamir (2008) and Table No. 21.