Chellam sir, a retired spy who comes to the rescue of Manoj Bajpayee’s Srikant Tiwari in the latest season of espionage action-thriller The Family Man, is now a national rage and the subject of viral memes.
Actor Uday Mahesh, who played the “super conscious” former intelligence officer on the Amazon Prime Video series, says he is up for a spin-off on the beloved character and even a reprisal in the upcoming season three.
Chellum’s popularity is similar to that of Bob Biswas, an insurance agent by the day, Biswas moonlights as a hitman in the Vidya Balan-starrer 2012 Kahaani. The character is now getting a spin off film with Abhishek Bachchan.
Asked if he was game for a Chellam stand-alone series given the popularity of the character, Mahesh said, “If I get an offer like that, I would definitely love to do it. Even for Family Man 3, if they”ll call me, I”ll be up for it.”
The 51-year-old, who is primarily a writer and director in Tamil cinema, said he had first auditioned for the role of Dheepan, a senior Sri Lankan Tamil fighter who uses diplomacy to achieve the cause of liberation.
The role was eventually played by Azhagam Perumal.
Two months after no word from the team, Mahesh received a callback and they offered him the role of Chellam.
Since The Family Man was a hit show, the actor said, he wanted to be a part of it.
“So I said yes to the role,” the actor said about his extended cameo.
The creators of the show Raj Nidimoru and Krishna DK briefed him about the character, who is now a viral sensation on social media via memes, when they met on the set.
“They said this is a retired spy who helps Srikant and they have worked together some time in the past. He is a super conscious spy. It was an interesting part.”
From tossing sim cards into shopping bags, abruptly hanging up a call to chiding Srikant over wasting water, Chellam is now part of the pop culture in the digital age.
In the series, the character seems to give a breakthrough to Srikant every time he hits a roadblock in his mission, with a meme equating Chellam with Google, the search engine on the Internet.
“I liked the role because there was a comical touch to it. We never thought this was going to be so huge,” Mahesh added. (PTI)