By Devapriyo Bhattacharjee
Mumbai, Oct 2 (IANS) Actor Ravi Kishen, known as the superstar of Bhojpuri cinema, says he will now sign on fewer regional films and concentrate more on Bollywood projects, specially after having worked in Shyam Benegal's "Welcome To Sajjanpur".
Ravi, considered to be the most saleable actor in the Bhojpuri belt, said he would be cutting down his Bhojpuri projects by one-third to give more time to Hindi films.
"Previously I used to do 12 Bhojpuri films a year and now I will be only doing four," Ravi told IANS.
The actor said he is happy that he has finally got a good entry into Bollywood and added that he is doing quite a few Hindi films.
"I'm happy that I am now into Bollywood and doing good roles. I'll now be concentrating on them more because Hindi films have a wider audience. It is the right platform to show your talent and I will take full advantage of it," said Ravi.
The Bhojpuri star has done significant roles in Hindi films like "Money Hai To Honey Hai" and "Welcome To Sajjanpur" after playing cameos in several movies including "Army", "Kudrat", "Tere Naam" and "Phir Hera Pheri" among others.
"I have been in the industry for the last 19 years, doing small roles. Now I want to take advantage of my experience. I want more people to see my films and performance. And now with Hindi films going international, its audience has increased manifold," said Ravi, who debuted in Hindi films by playing a cameo in "Udhaar Ki Zindagi" in 1990.
But the actor has no plans to leave Bhojpuri films altogether, even though he is getting many good offers in Bollywood.
"Bhojpuri films have given me so much. I will never leave it. Bhojpuri films need me as much as I need them," he felt.
With his latest foray into Bollywood, his rate has also increased. So will he be charging the same fees for Bhojpuri films too?
"I'm the highest paid actor in Bhojpuri cinema today. My rates are equivalent to the expenditure for the whole film. I will not compromise with my rates as they have to pay me my market rate as I guarantee several things. First, I work 12 hours a day and I am always with the crew doing my best in the least possible time.
"Besides, my films have a guaranteed opening as I have a huge number of fans. People are crazy to see my films and they run house full at least for a few days. So the producers never run at a loss," said Ravi.
The actor will be seen in forthcoming Hindi films like "Luck", "Loot" and "Mukti".
In "Luck", Ravi plays a psycho and he did quite a bit of research to get animal-like traits in his character.
"I have watched the National Geographic channel for two months before doing this film as I studied the characteristics of several animals, which I had to portray in the film."
Made on a budget of Rs.1 billion, the film has some exciting stunts, said Ravi.
"Luck" also stars Sanjay Dutt, Imraan Khan and introduces Tamil superstar Kamal Haasan's daughter Shruti.