Actor Akash Singh Rajput is thrilled to be part of Siddharth Kumar Tewary’s Porus. The actor, who plays the role of Hephaestion in the show, says that he developed a love for history about school, which is why he loves being part of Porus as well. “To be honest, I use to sleep during my history classes in school because as a child you don't find any interest in history and I was only thinking about the future. I got interested in history after my schooling. We Indians have a super history like no other country. Slowly, I started reading up of civilizations and dynasties. It is very important to know about your history before you create your future,” he says.
Talking about his character, he says that his friendship with Alexander was what made him unique. “Hepahestion was a Macedonian nobleman and a general in the army, 1st in command after Alexander the Great. He had been brought up with Alexander from childhood and shared all his secrets. He was the only trusted and loyal friend of Alexander. Their friendship lasted throughout their lives and was compared to Achilles and Patroclus.(troy) He helped Alexander in commanding the cavalry and helping him encountering many tasks during Alexander's winning war. He was with him all his life and was known for his loyalty and loving friendship with Alexander. After Hephaestion death, Alexander celebrated his funeral for eight months and announced him as Divine Hero. Alexander died after eight months of his death,” he says.
Coincidentally, Akash shares a great bond with actor Rohit Purohit too, who plays the role of Alexander in the show. “Rohit Purohit is my big brother. A fabulous actor, brave heart and my Alexander for life. He has been working in this industry for long and has a lot of experience with him. It is really a pleasure working with him and watching him live in front of me. As a newcomer, you get to learn a lot from experienced actors like him, both on and off screen. He is very supportive and is constantly teaching me. To help develop our bond on screen, we often try to meet off-screen too, to get to know each other. He treats me like a younger brother and reminds me of my elder brother,” he says.
However, the actor adds that it’s challenging to play a historical character. “It's always difficult to play a historic character. I started learning horse riding, sword fighting and tried to develop many behavioral skills like that of the Romans.
The actor says that the production house, Swastik Productions have provided many facilities to make this an easy ride for the actors. “Swastik Productions has helped me a lot in providing classes and giving me support in Umbergaon, where we shoot and stay. Life in Umbergaon is wonderful and completely different from Mumbai. It’s away from the traffic and sound pollution. Here it’s very peaceful. Swastik Productions takes good care of all the actors. They take care of all the food, shelter and transport and provide us good facilities for daily living. You are quite relaxed as all your basic needs are fulfilled. I love Swastik Productions and this is my second project with them, after Karamphal Data Shani. I will try to work with them again and again.”
Akash is not one to shy away from challenges. He comes from a political background and had to fight his way to become an actor. “I have done my schooling from Scindia School Gwalior where Salmaan Khan and Anurag Kashyap have studied. I went on to do my graduation after that in Christ University Bangalore, the best in India for BBM (Bachelors in Business Management). After that I joined politics as a youth president and helped my dad in politics. My dad is a MLA from Sagar (M.P) and has been in politics since past 25 years, that means my whole life. Politics flows in my DNA,” he says, adding, “However, I always wanted to become an artist. After doing my post graduation (MBA), I started my struggle to achieve my dream. I had to fight my own battle to convince my dad to let me try my luck in acting. As many people in my family were opposed to acting and worried about my life in Mumbai. Finally, I had a serious talk with my dad and convinced him to send me Mumbai for one year...and the rest is history.”
Talking about the work that he has done so far, he says, “I started getting roles in episodics. I got work in Bazigar on Life Ok. I did a movie with Anupam Kher sir which is yet to release. I did a short film with 'Prakash Jha Sir called Nalsa. It was a dream come true for me when I got a movie 'Toilet Ek Prem Katha' in which I essayed the role of a reporter with Akshay Kumar sir. Then I got a chance to work with Swastik Productions as Raja Manu in Karamphal Data Shani. They liked me and signed me for Porus as Hepaestion. I am also doing a Web Series for Amazon Prime called 'Mirzapur' with excel entertainment, which will be released in September 2018.”