‘I always wanted to be part of the Kannada film industry’
...says former Bigg Boss Kannada contestant Kishen Bilagali, who talks about fulfilling his acting dream and why he preferred to start his journey with Johnty s/o Jayaraj
"My last movie was as a child artist when I was in 7th standard! So excited to kick start the dream of being an actor.... thank you for always being so supportive and loving." This post by former Bigg Boss contestant and winner of Dance Deewana (reality show judged by Madhuri Dixit) Kishen Bilagali shows his excitement about fulfilling his childhood dream. He will be a part of Anand Raj’s upcoming directorial, Johnty s/o Jayaraj. The film, whose title was launched recently by actor Dhananjay, features Ajith Jayaraj as the hero and will have Kishen Bilagali playing the parallel lead.
As Kishen heads out for the second day of his shoot, he tells Cinema Express, “I did my first film when I was in class 7, and I had shared screen space with Radhika Kumaraswamy. Before that, I also did two serials, one of which was with senior actor Tara. However, I could not continue in a full-fledged manner as my parents wanted me to concentrate on my education.”
Kishen says he chose to pick up Johnty s/o Jayaraj as his first film because the subject of rowdyism interested him. “It is a story of Bengaluru’s first underworld don, MP Jayaraj. It is based on real incidents. Ajith plays the role of his father, and I am the second lead,” he adds.
Kishen admits that he is often tagged as the ‘kissing star’ and has become popular for the romantic traits he displayed during his stint in Bigg Boss Kannada. And that’s why he wanted to get a different image and decided to take up this particular role in Johnty s/o Jayaraj. “Though this character presents me as an innocent guy in the beginning, I end up being part of a rowdy gang, which I thought was different. I have just left myself in the hands of the director,” he says.
Post this film, Kishen will start shooting for a movie directed by Vismaya. “The muhurath of my second film is planned in January. It is going to be a full-fledged romantic drama, and I will be sharing screen space with Saathvika Shravya. I will be taking up a few more projects in 2021,” he reveals, adding, “It has been my dream to become an actor, but I am a person who wants to go with the flow.”
Kishen feels proud that somebody like him, who doesn’t know anybody in the industry and is self-made, can enter Sandalwood. “I know I have people to support me, but that initial pick-up was done all by myself. In taking my acting career forward, I just want to pick the right projects,” he says.
Though he always wanted to be part of Kannada cinema, rejections from various filmmakers lead him to participate in the television dance show, he reveals. “I was rejected in loads of projects, so much so that I had lost my confidence when I landed in Mumbai. However, I gathered myself up to win that reality show. It taught me that one should not give up.”
Kishen has one more dream that he wants to fulfil — to do a Kannada film based only on dance —something that’s never been seen before. “It will need a lot of hard work to reach there, but I want to make it happen,” he says.