Popular TV shows take generational leap, child actors to go

By Subhash K. Jha

Mumbai, May 30 (IANS) Child actors of popular television shows may have caught the fancy of many a viewer, but one may not get to see the cute kids of "Uttaran" or the naughty little boy playing Lord Krishna any more as they are now set to grow up on screen.

Two prime-time hits of Colors entertainment channel will take a generational leap in the coming weeks. This will see the exit of child actors Sparsh Khanchandani and Ishita Panchal, who play Ichcha and Tapasya in "Uttaran", and Krishna Bhatia, who essays the role of the little Krishna in "Jai Shri Krishna".

It might come as a disappointment to regular viewers, but the channel says it has a good reason behind the move.

"There are too many 'me-too' imitations of what you call the juvenile formula. We feel confident enough now to let our two popular serials take a generation leap without affecting their popularity," said Rajesh Kamat, CEO of Colors.

However, the kids in Colors' flagship show "Balika Vadhu" remain unchanged, although the actors Avika Gor and Avinash Mukherjee, playing the child-couple Anandi and Jagdish, are growing up right in front of viewers' eyes.

There was talk of the two "Balika Vadhu" kids departing from the plot when in recent months the focus of the serial shifted to the adult actors. But now the little twosome will be back at the plot's fulcrum.

Said Kamat: "The reason why less of Anandi and Jadgish was being shown in recent episodes is because both the actors playing the two characters were busy with their exams. It'd have been very ironical if after addressing child literacy so forcefully in the serial, our own lead players didn't get time off for their studies. Exams over, Avika and Avinash will be back full force."

Kamath envisages no generation leap in "Balika Vadhu".

"In fact it would be interesting to see the two actors growing up as the serial progresses."

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