A shriek in the night, the shining nozzle of a gun in the moonlight, the trickle of blood leading to a crime scene — it’s all that and more on Khooni Saaya, the crime show with a difference that is being aired on weeknights. Get ready for chilling tales of deceit, villainy, kidnap, fury and furore as gruesome acts of murder and violence unfold on the small screen. You get to watch the recreation of real life crime stories and the investigations that went into each crime by the best and most brilliant detectives and investigators of the city.
Hosted by television and film actor Rohit Roy who plays the role of the sutradhar, the series promises non-stop thrills and some edge-of-the-seat moments, and stories that will hold you in their gruesome spell. In each episode of Khooni Saaya, Rohit will present a new murder mystery and will show you the evil that can lurk within a neighbourhood.
Criminally good
In an interview with Rohit, who has years of experience in hosting programmes that range from games, dance and music shows, it is clear that he is driven with a passion for his art. As host and narrator of Khooni Saaya, he is quite excited about presenting a show with brilliant reconstructions, exhaustive investigation and a terrifying narrative. “I take you through the world of crime and you get to see the victim and the culprit as I take you on the journey. It is a show that is based on real life stories. The tales are gruesome and gripping. Ultimately, the message of the show is — you cannot get away from any crime that you commit.”
It has been two decades in the entertainment industry for Rohit, but he finds that it is a career that never loses its freshness and excitement. “I started with Swabhimaan, which started the trend of daily soaps in the country. It was scripted by Shobhaa De and directed by Mahesh Bhatt. I played the role of Rishabh Malhotra in the series and I can truly say, what I am today is because of Rishabh Malhotra. In so many small towns, they still call me Rishabh.”
Rohit also did a comedy show call Baat Ban Jaaye based on Three’s Company and has done several roles in Bollywood films as well. He is also known for his work in Jhalak Dikhla Ja and The Bachelorette India with Mallika Sherawat. “I am perhaps the only actor who has done TV, films, theatre and reality shows and I have hosted and directed shows too,” he says. “I think that films are larger than life and have a great shelf life. Even a small part in a film has a lasting impact and people still remember them after several years. On TV, the actors have a shorter shelf life as the shows are not played over and over again.”
All for entertainment
Ask Rohit which medium of entertainment he prefers the most and he says, “I prefer theatre to any other medium. Recently, I did a play called Unfaithfully Yours and I realised how challenging it was. What you get in return is the immediate response from the audience and it is wonderful. It is a different kind of high and you can never get this moment from films.”
As for crime shows in India, Rohit says they are far more melodramatic when compared to international shows like Monk, CSI or NYPD Blue which are thrilling. “You can feel the crime unfolding in front of you. In India, we introduce elements like extra terrestrials and ghosts into our crime shows and we lose the essence of real crime. Khooni Saaya has American content and was shot there. It has been revamped in India so that the storytelling is Indian and the stories have the same base.”
Rohit feels that crime shows are popular because of their thrill value. “Most people are voyeuristic. They like to know what is happening in someone else’s life though they don’t want it to happen to them. That is the USP of a thriller. It is entertaining and it keeps you on the edge.”
Looking back, Rohit feels that he became an actor by accident. “I used to scoff and ridicule the profession until I was spotted by someone and was asked to take a shot at acting. Before I knew it I became an actor and now it is my life.”
Rohit likes to take up roles that are full of action. “I don’t like romance as I find the romantic film sequences difficult. I am completely at sea if I have to romance my heroines. I like to play intense dramatic roles,” he says with much intensity.
The actor is currently part of Madhur Bhandarkar’s next Calendar Girls, and there are many more movies in the offing too. He feels that the definition of stardom today has changed a lot. “Today, it is the TV shows that make the stars, not the other way around. In fact, the superstars of TV are far more famous than film stars.”
Rohit has some advice for youngsters who want to become actors one day. “Actor Naseeruddin Shah once told me, ‘Know your lines like the back of your hand. Know them till they become a part of you.’ But the most important advice I would like to give youngsters is to be patient. If you are committed and focused, you will get ahead.” Khooni Saaya airs from Monday to Friday at 8 pm, on Investigation Discovery.