However, information about the young actor playing the role of the grown up Prince Siddharth was kept strictly under wraps!
Now, as the show gets ready to delve into the life of Prince Siddharth as he matured into a fine, young man, the time has come to reveal the actor who has been chosen to play this coveted role.
After much contemplation and a global search that has spanned several countries, Zee TV and Spice Studios has found their perfect Prince Siddharth in budding actor Himanshu.
With such microscopic attention to detail that went into the casting process, it was not an easy task to zero in on an actor who met most of the characteristics and qualities that the producers were looking for in Buddha.
After going through almost a thousand actor profiles, a young budding actor from Jaipur was finally selected for the role.
The elaborate casting process was but the tip of the iceberg when it came to getting into the character of Buddha. After being cast, Himanshu underwent extensive creative sessions with both the producer and director to understand every nuance of the character and demeanor of Prince Siddharth.
To understand the mindscape and tranquility of Buddha's temperament, the actor was even given a quiet apartment to help him meditate and remain peaceful while preparing for the role.
Himanshu Soni and Kajal Jain who play the role of Prince Siddharth and Yashodhara in Zee TV's Buddha at the media reveal of the actors
While a serene temperament played a huge part in the preparation process, rigorous physical training was also required and included intensive fitness training, yoga sessions, martial arts and horse riding. Post all of his preparation for the role, Himanshu continues to work out on the sets to maintain his chiseled physique.
The actor has lost around 15 kgs to get the contoured physique that is seen onscreen.
When asked about the decision of choosing Himanshu as the lead, Dr. B.K Modi, Chairman, Spice Studios said, "We auditioned scores of actors, both seasoned and newcomers, but Himanshu fit the character's description like a glove. Out of the 32 characteristics of Buddha, Himanshu met 28 of those. His down to earth and likeable persona was key for the character's successful portrayal.
"We put him through rigorous training for martial arts, tai chi, dialogue delivery, acting amongst several others to mold him into Prince Siddhrarth's role and he's come out polished, shinning like a prince."
It is known that the show was initially supposed to be made into a film with filmmakers Shekhar Kapur and Ashutosh Gowariker heading the research and script development.
However, the project had to be shelved as the makers weren't able to find the right actor to play the role of Buddha.
While Hollywood heartthrob Orlando Bloom was Shekhar Kapur's initial choice, the search for the perfect Buddha was expanded globally with countless actors aspiring to bag the role of Buddha.
Newcomer Himanshu said, "It is an honour to play a character as significant and important as Buddha. I have undergone rigorous fitness training, yoga and martial arts sessions, each of which made it easier for me to understand the body language and the depth of the character and persona of Prince Siddharth as well as his journey to becoming Buddha.
"The faith that the producers and the channel have shown in me is monumental and I hope I have done justice to the part."
--IBNS (Posted on 16-10-2013)