Sharad Kelkar: Need to keep in mind the uniform`s honour
After a successful association with Ajay Devgn in Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior (2020), in which he played Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Sharad Kelkar has reunited with the superstar on Bhuj: The Pride of India. The war drama, which also stars Sanjay Dutt and Sonakshi Sinha, sees Kelkar play Army officer RK Nair while Devgn steps into the shoes of Indian Air Force squadron leader Vijay Karnik. Kelkar's character is said to be modelled on an Indian Army officer who played a crucial role in warding off the Pakistani army as Karnik and 300 women from a Gujarat village rebuilt an airbase in Bhuj during the 1971 India-Pakistan war.
"Playing any character comes with its responsibilities. However, wearing a uniform or playing a character who has historic significance further adds to the responsibility. We need to keep in mind the honour that the uniform or the character carries," says the actor, who followed director Abhishek Dudhaiya's vision to the T.
Such a character demands intensive prep. The actor says he interacted closely with Army officials to lend authenticity to his part in the Disney+ Hotstar offering. "I learned about their routine, their disciplined attitude, and the nuances of the army culture. Since my character is shown as a boxer in his early days, I also trained in boxing," adds Kelkar.