Tandav: Saif Ali Khan details contrast of new role to Sacred Games ‘More personal’

Tandav: Amazon Prime Video release trailer for new series

The first season of new crime drama Tandav joins thousands of new Indian series in Amazon Prime’s growing catalogue of original projects. Series lead Saif Ali Khan has spoken exclusively to Express.co.uk about his part in the series, and how it compared to his first TV role for Netflix’s Sacred Games.

Leading Bollywood star Saif Ali Khan revealed he found working on the new series for Amazon Prime, Tandav, far more personal than his first job on television.

Originally known for his lead appearances in major Hindi films, Khan recently made the transition to the small screen with Netflix’s Sacred Games in 2018.

He now joins the cast of Tandav, a brand-new series for Amazon Prime centred on political intrigue and corruption in modern New Delhi.

As the son of an Indian cricket captain and current head of the Pataudi family, Khan confirmed he related much more to his part as a political leader than police inspector Sartaj Singh in Sacred Games.

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He explained: “One thing that attracted me to the role of Samar were the parallels I could draw from his life.

“I have grown up in a very privileged section of New Delhi, I understand that.

“By being asked to play a privileged prince of a politician, a lot of that came naturally to me because of the way I’ve been brought up. It’s pretty good casting, though he’s far more devious than I!”

Khan portrays Sama Pratap Singh, a charismatic political leader whose efforts to inherit the role of Prime Minister are sabotaged by his reluctant father, the current PM Devki Nandan (Tigmanshu Dhulia).

Meanwhile, New Delhi’s corrupt powers are challenged by campus activist Shiva (Zeeshan Ayub), who becomes an unlikely political rival following a powerful protest.

As their two starkly different worlds begin to collide, Tandav’s first season will explore the corrupting effects of power against the backdrop of one of the world’s leading cities.

Although Saif Ali Khan outlined a number of similarities between himself and his character Samar, he nevertheless took the role to further challenge himself as an actor.

He continued: “My father was a national cricket captain and Nawab of Pataudi and my mother is herself a former movie star.”

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“Despite this I have always looked to take on roles which represent different backgrounds – take the sad cop in Sacred Games for example. 

“But I will always have that personal connection with a character like Samar because of the way I grew up.”

Khan currently resides in Mumbai, though he grew up in New Delhi and briefly returned there after his school years.

Because of this, he expressed a deep connection to Tandav’s setting, though the New Delhi of the series is a little removed from how it is in reality.

The star recalled: “I think Tandav perfectly encapsulates the modern day questions aimed at privilege and lineage in India, as it should do, and the shift away from dynasties being seen as institutions.”

“The scale of it is massive. India is the world’s largest democracy, and to film that was fascinating.”

Tandav will certainly kick off Amazon Prime’s 2021 TV schedule with a riveting start, and the star has already confessed his hopes for a second season.

Tandav season 1 is available to stream on Amazon Prime Video from Friday, January 15.

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