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“I was jobless for eight months!”

A popular name on television, he has carved a niche for himself in hosting television and award shows. From being a VJ to bagging not one but two feature films – Mickey Virus and Tere Bin Laden 2 – Manish Paul has come a long way

First Break

After my studies in Delhi, I moved to Mumbai with a few offers in hand. I began by hosting shows and then I became a VJ with Zee Music. I was really appreciated and the audience liked me as a host. Thereafter, I hosted several shows and many award functions too.

Fiction Shows

From hosting reality shows, I made a move towards fiction. Yet, I was not offered a lead role in any of them. My tracks used to get dissolved very easily so I was not happy with the work coming my way and so I decided to take a break for a while.

Breakdown

In 2008, I was sitting at home without any work. I didn’t want to work merely because I had to earn a living. But I ended up being jobless for eight months. This period taught me a lot. Especially that one should never give up. I had no choice but to return to hosting shows. I was offered Dance India Dance and very soon Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa followed.

Films

I feel films are a natural progression for anyone who works in this industry and that’s how it was for me. I always knew I wanted to do films so I started meeting people in the industry.

On Mickey Virus

Mickey Virus happened quite by chance. A friend of mine introduced me to the film’s director, Saurabh Verma. He started narrating the script to me and when he mentioned the title, Mickey Virus, I joked that my pet name was ‘Mickey’. Then he told me that the film was based on Malviya Nagar in Delhi and I was from Malviya Nagar too! Since the casting had already been done I had no chance. Fortunately after 10 days, he asked me if I was interested in playing the lead role. That’s why I believe I was lucky to have landed this film.

On Tere Bin Laden 2

This film too happened quite by chance. I met director Abhishek Sharma for another film, where he was offering me a small role. But after meeting me, he asked me if I would play the lead role in the sequel of Tere Bin Laden. He felt I was perfect for the role.

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