Alt Balaji Medically Yours: Lead Actor Shantanu Maheshwari Ends Up Smoking Real Cigarettes For The Web Series
Shantanu Maheshwari (Photo Credits: YouTube Screengrab)

It came as a surprise to all Shantau Maheshwari fans when Alt Balaji released the promo for Medically Yours, their next drama based on the life of medical students. Shantanu plays the role of medical student Abir Basu, who has been forced into the field because of family pressure (his entire family is full of doctors). The show also sheds light on the lives of medical students and the struggles and hardships that they have to face to pass out. In the show, because Abir is pushed into the field of MBBS while he has always dreamed of a career in music, he is shown to have an angry side to him. Shantanu Maheshwari to Be Seen in This Show Next, Ahead of Ekta Kapoor’s Medically Yours

As part of his angry and complexed natured character, Shantanu is also shown to be smoking quite a lot on the show, which by the way, the actor attempted in real life. Yes, all the scene where we see Shantanu smoke, the lad's done it for real, despite developing an aversion for smoking.

Says the actor, "I had to smoke cigarettes for quite a few scenes in the show. While preparing for the character, smoking initially was quite tough for me as it was the very first time I was putting a cigarette in my mouth. But the scene required me to do it,  and it was important for me to live up to my character's essence. So I pushed myself to do the best I could!" Shantanu Maheshwari’s New Romantic Single Will Make You Go 'Haaye Oye'!

Shantanu had even developed a slight throat infection which increased even more whilst smoking for the scenes, to the extent where he was coughing profusely, not only while shooting but even for a few weeks after the shoot was over!

"It increased the throat infection that I had caught onto and made it even more worse than it was over those couple of weeks, and there isn't even one scene where I haven't coughed while smoking! But I decided that I had to complete them all in sync, to feel what my character was feeling," the actor recalled. Shantanu Maheshwari and His Dance Crew Desi Hoppers Represent India at the Oxford University

Admitting that smoking is addictive, Shantanu said, "While shooting these scenes, the one thing I realized is that for youngsters specially, it is very easy to get addicted to smoking as there is immense peer pressure these days to look cool and do things that others are doing, Also in our field there is always an endless wait between our shots while shooting."

"So somehow the easiest way to kill time and de-stress is to have that cigarette in your hand! But when I took those first few puffs, it just didn't feel healthy in and it made me feel quite dehydrated. So somehow I managed to restrict myself to only taking that cigarette in my hand for the scene, and not any more after that at all, which I am quite happy about", said the actor before signing off.