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Amitabh Bachchan apprehensive of TV acting debut

After dominating Indian cinema for more than four decades, Amitabh Bachchan is gearing up for his television acting debut this year.

The Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan will star in a television fiction series that will be directed by the filmmaker Anurag Kashyap. Rafiq Maqbool / AP Photo
The Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan will star in a television fiction series that will be directed by the filmmaker Anurag Kashyap. Rafiq Maqbool / AP Photo

After dominating Indian cinema for more than four decades, Amitabh Bachchan is gearing up for his television acting debut this year.

Bachchan is no stranger to television, having hosted several seasons of the Indian version of the quiz show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire,but this will be his first role in a television fiction series.

The move comes after Bachchan made his Hollywood debut last month in the Australian director Baz Luhrmann's The Great Gatsby, walking the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival with Leonardo DiCaprio.

"Never done serials before, so apprehension plays hard ... but ... better to have loved and lost than not to have loved at all," the 70-year-old actor said on Twitter on Wednesday.

In an interview with Indian reporters, Bachchan said: "I just felt that this could be yet another step" to connect with audiences "almost immediately".

His role and the content of the television series are still a closely guarded secret. The series will be directed by the Bollywood filmmaker Anurag Kashyap and is scheduled to be broadcast later this year.

"This series will change the way India sees television and will open the doors for a new genre in television entertainment," said Kashyap, the director of the recent hit Gangs of Wasseypur.

Bollywood stars are increasingly turning to television for more visibility and as an alternative to a movie career, hoping to cash in on an audience hungry to see more of their favourite actors. Several reality shows in India are hosted by movie stars.

Another leading Indian actor, Anil Kapoor, who played the quiz show host in Slumdog Millionaire, will star in the lead role of the Indian version of the American action series 24 that will also be broadcast later this year.

* Reuters

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