1. Dia Mirza
With the boom in OTT platforms and the web medium, billions of hours of content is available at a click. To stand out and make a mark among innumerable series, shorts and films hitting the internet is not an easy task, let alone enjoy a breakthrough. But these 15 actors on our list of Digital Disruptors of 2019 have not just managed to catch attention but hold on to it for long enough to enjoy a moment or two with the classes, masses and critics alike.
Take Dia Mirza for example. The actress, who was last seen in Sanju, stretched onto play a Pakistani woman Kainaaz wrongly accused of terrorism in ZEE5 Original Kaafir. Dia, also a producer, attracted rave reviews in her very first web outing that beautifully underlines humanity, in bold.
2. Mohit Raina
Mohit Raina, who played the male lead opposite Dia Mirza in Kaafir, is not far behind. He kicked off 2019 by making his Bollywood debut with the commercially and critically viable Uri: The Surgical Strike and followed up the success with a digital debut. Raina essayed a lawyer-turned-journalist Vedant Rathod who fights for Kainaaz and her daughter’s Seher’s justice. Not only is Raina remarkable as Rathod but proves his mettle as an artist using lesser words.
3. Arjun Rampal
Arjun Rampal’s deep baritone is enough to make girls go weak in the knees. Add to that the charisma of an Air Force Commander Karan Sachdev who later becomes a commercial pilot. The actor looks dapper in the white uniform and is a tonic for your tired eyes in his maiden web venture The Final Call. Moreover, he is testing the waters, as it’s his first time playing a pilot. His character lays a heavy emphasis on the mental health of people we entrust our lives to. Not only is his performance brilliant, but his switch from his past to the present is extraordinary. You wouldn’t want to miss the hunk go all-rogue!
4. Shabir Ahluwalia
The timing for Shabir Ahluwalia’s return to the crime and comedy space couldn’t have been any more perfect. With Kumkum Bhagya, he has cemented his position as die-hard romantic but with Fixerr he proves he is in for the big gamble. With a dashing personality, great comic timing and finest acting chops in his arsenal, Shabir as Jaiveer sets out to break the chakravyuh. He effortlessly slips in an aside or two in every episode, speaking directly to his viewers – a concept rarely used in the web series made in recent times.
5. Ravi Dubey
Ravi Dubey returns to the Jamai Raja franchise, much to the delight of #SidNi and #NiVi fans as he reunited with Nia Sharma for ZEE5 Original Jamai 2.0. The action thriller takes the television franchise forward in the web universe as Ravi and Nia return as Siddharth and Roshni. There are no two ways about the fact that Ravi owns every character he plays. His impeccable timing and chops garnered him worldwide appreciation making him one of the most popular web debutants of the year.
6. Krystle D'souza
Krystle D’souza, who returns to acting after a hiatus, is equal parts remarkable and ravishing. The Bramharakshas actress breaks free from her bahu-beti image to step into the shoes of a sassy, sexy and smart-mouth Tarini in ZEE5 and ALTBalaji Original Fittrat. Even in her weakest moments, Krystle as Tarini takes a flight. From being a b**tch to looking bewitching in a bedroom, Krystle goes from strength to strength nailing every scene.
7. Divyanka Tripathi Dahiya
Divyanka Tripathi Dahiya is hands down one of the best things to ever happen to Indian television. The Banoo Main Teri Dulhann actress forayed into the web space with ZEE5 and ALTBalaji Original Coldd Lassi Aur Chicken Masala. She essayed a short-tempered chef and a mother, Nitya. If her sizzling chemistry with Rajeev Khandelwal is a heatwave, her adorable, loving side is the tadka of the series!
8. Amala Akkineni
Amala Akkineni is one of the many reasons why you should watch ZEE5 Telugu Original High Priestess. She plays the role of Swathy Reddy, a tarot card reader and a psychic who uses her abilities to solve cases. While Amala had made her comeback in 2012 with Sekhar Kammula’s Telugu film Life Is Beautiful and done films such as Hamari Adhuri Kahani (2015) and Karwaan (2018), she will be headlining after a long time. Also, this is the first time she’s doing a web series.
9. Jimmy Sheirgill
Ever since Maachis, Jimmy Sheirgill has donned several hats and essayed many characters. From starting out as the cutest boy about town to making us fall in love with goons, he has done it all. As he prepares to headline ZEE5 Original Rangbaaz Phirse, his art and craft as an actor have only evolved and the graph has only progressed upwards.
10. Mahesh Manjrekar
Meena will be seen playing the role of an agent in the upcoming web series, Karoline Kamakshi. Meena is one of the most loved actresses who has worked in a lot of films, has been a part of reality shows on television, too. We’ll be seeing her in the digital space for the first time.
12. Sachin Khedekar
13. Bhushan Pradhan
Bhushan Pradhan plays the main character Damodar Chapekar in Gondya Ala Re, and shines in every frame. The actor’s stellar performance is the best part of this series. He is restrained, intense and convincing. Watch out for the ending scene in the second episode where Damodar has an argument with Indian authorities serving the Britishers. Bhushan demands attention with his powerful dialogue.
14. Niharika Konidela
Niharika Konidela acted and also produced her debut Telugu web-series, Muddapappu Avakai, under her banner Pink Elephant Pictures. The digital drama was very well-received by the audience who loved her portrayal of Aasha.
Satyadev Kancharana is the new-age actor who is too good to be boxed as the ‘quintessential Telugu hero’. His acting skills, his dialogue delivery, and his honesty have brought a breath of fresh air to the Telugu cinema. He plays an integral role in this 10-episode series as Venu Reddy. See his stellar performance here.
Which of these debutants did you love the most? Share with us in the comments box below.