Season 2 BBC First (*119) 21:00 Drama
Nikesh Patel can sympathise with the tough time that his clerk character Aafrin Dalal has had in period drama Indian Summers (2015-2016). But while Aafrin has simply fallen in love with the wrong woman – married high-society British Alice Whelan (Jemima West) in colonial India – 30-year-old Nikesh had to deal with demanding parents…
1 They’re pharmacists and wanted
their son to get a “stable job”, but Nikesh got hooked on acting while studying English literature from 2004 to 2007 at the University Of Warwick. “I cut a deal with my folks: a gap year after uni to do drama school. If that didn’t work, I would’ve had to knuckle down and get a real job,” he says.
2 That “one year” turned into three
when he enrolled at the Guildhall School Of Music And Drama. But when roles didn’t come pouring in after graduating in 2010, Nikesh was ready to turn to journalism as a career, only to be cast as barman Dan in supernatural drama series Bedlam (2011-2012).
3 As convincing as his Indian accent
is while playing Aafrin, Nikesh is actually British born and bred. “I had a couple of roles that needed an Indian way of speaking, so I’d already done the ground-work before we flew out to Penang, Malaysia for filming,” he says.
4 While the show’s ratings were
dismal, one thing Nikesh and his castmates loved was the catering. So much so that Nikesh jokes, “I had to gym all the time after that food. I had these shirtless scenes, so I had to be in shape.”
5 Is there a significant other enjoy
ing that hot bod? Nikesh is mum on his love-life, but there were rumours that he was dating co-star Jemima following their flirty chats on social network Twitter earlier this year.