Bhaskar in 2015
31 October 1963|
|Medium||Comedian, actor, broadcaster|
|Notable works and roles||See below|
Sanjeev Bhaskar, OBE (born 31 October 1963) is a British comedian, actor and broadcaster, best known for his work in the BBC Two comedy series Goodness Gracious Me and as host of The Kumars at No. 42. He also presented and starred in a documentary series called India with Sanjeev Bhaskar in which he travelled to India and visited his ancestral home in today's Pakistan. Bhaskar's acting roles include the lead role of Dr. Prem Sharma in The Indian Doctor and a main role as DI Sunny Khan in Unforgotten.
In 2003, he was listed in The Observer as one of the 50 funniest acts in British comedy.
Bhaskar was born in Ealing, London, and grew up living above a launderette in Hounslow, west London. He earned a degree in marketing from Hatfield Polytechnic before landing a job as a marketing executive at IBM. He soon realised that he preferred comedy to marketing and joined forces with an old college friend, Nitin Sawhney, to start a musical comedy double act called "The Secret Indians (non-Asian)" which they first performed in 1996 at the now-defunct Tom Allen Arts Centre in East London. This performance was featured on a BBC magazine show called Reportage. They performed extensively also at the Watermans Arts Centre with numerous other acts at a regular Asian comedy night called "One Nation Under a Groove...Innit". Their real break came when they were performing a show at the Oval House venue in South London where, after a strong review in Time Out magazine by journalist and playwright Bonnie Greer, they were approached by Anil Gupta, the producer of what was to become the BBC sketch series Goodness Gracious Me.
In 2005 Bhaskar was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the New Year Honours List.
As part of the BBC’s series of programmes on the 60th anniversary of the independence of India and Pakistan, he filmed a BBC documentary series India with Sanjeev Bhaskar with director Deep Sehgal which was broadcast to coincide with the 60th anniversary of Indian Independence in August 2007. According to the BBC it included "an emotional journey" to his father’s ancestral home which is now in Pakistan.
On 23 February 2009 Sanjeev was appointed as the University of Sussex's new Chancellor. He was formally installed at the university's summer graduation ceremony on 22 July 2009.
He also featured in a Channel 4 documentary series called The House That Made Me. This show, produced by Nutopia in 2010, recreated his childhood home and introduced him to the characters of his youth.
On 31 October 2014 Bhaskar hosted Kermode and Mayo's Film Review, standing in for Simon Mayo on the BBC's flagship film show. He also played the lead character in the online animation Rajesh Finesse in 2014.
In April 2015 he was given the Outstanding Achievement in Television award at The Asian Awards.
- The Real McCoy (1991) in various roles
- Bollywood or Bust (1994) quiz show, hosted as himself
- Captain Butler (1997) as Adeel
- We Know Where you Live (1997) as various characters
- Goodness Gracious Me (1998) as various roles
- The Dance of Shiva (1998) as Sgt. Bakshi
- Jonathan Creek (1998) as Doctor in episode "Black Canary"
- Notting Hill (1999) as loud man in restaurant
- Small Potatoes (1999) as Rick Roy
- The Way It Is (2000) as various characters
- Inferno (2001) as Jaz
- Goodness Gracious Me: Back Where They Came From (2001) as various characters
- The Mystic Masseur (2001) as Beharry
- The Kumars at No. 42 (2001–2006) as Sanjeev Kumar
- The Guru (2002) as Rasphal the cook
- Dalziel and Pascoe (2002) as Graham Shah in episode "Mens Sana"
- Anita and Me (2002) as Mr. Kumar
- Comic Relief 2003 (2003) as Sanjeev Kumar
- Celebration's Advertisement (2004) - as himself
- Angell’s Hell (2005) as John Angell
- Life Isn’t All Ha Ha Hee Hee (2005) as Akaash
- Chopratown (2005) as Vik Chopra
- L'Entente Cordiale (2006) as Commander Bashir
- Scoop (2006) as poker player
- Jhoom Barabar Jhoom (2007) as shopkeeper
- India with Sanjeev Bhaskar (2007) as himself
- Mumbai Calling (2007) - as Kenny Gupta
- Dawn French's Boys Who Do Comedy - as himself
- Jackboots on Whitehall (2009) - as Rupee (voice)
- It's a Wonderful Afterlife (2010) - as curry man
- The Indian Doctor (2010) - as Prem Sharma
- London Boulevard (2010) - as Dr. Sanji Raju
- The Zero Theorem (2013) - as Doctor 1
- Doctor Who (2014) - Colonel Ahmed, Death in Heaven
- Drunk History (2015) - as Robert Baden-Powell
- Unforgotten (2015) – as DS Sunil "Sunny" Khan
- Horrible Histories (2015) - Various characters
- Absolutely Anything (2015) – Ray
- Thunderbirds Are Go (TBA) - Ethan Williams (voice)
- Art (2002) Whitehall Theatre, London, as Yvan
- Spamalot (2008) Palace Theatre, London, as King Arthur
- Totally Looped (2009) UK Tour
- "The A–Z of Laughter (Part One)". London: guardian.co.uk. 7 December 2003. Retrieved 23 May 2010.
- "Sanjeev Bhaskar: 'I have issues with inheritance tax. it's odd that you get taxed for dying'". Telegraph.co.uk. 14 May 2013.
- "Entertainment | Family wedding for Kumars stars". BBC News. 25 January 2005. Retrieved 23 August 2013.
- "Secret wedding for The Kumars – Showbiz – London Evening Standard". Standard.co.uk. 25 January 2005. Retrieved 23 August 2013.
- "Stand up for Iran's Baha'is - Voices from the arts call for the imprisoned Baha'i leaders in Iran to receive a fair trial". The Times. London. 2009-02-26. Retrieved 23 May 2010.
- "General Election 2010: leading stars oppose Tory BBC plans". The Daily Telegraph. London. 25 April 2010. Retrieved 23 May 2010.
- "India & Pakistan 60th Anniversary of Independence". bbc.co.uk.
- "Unknown title". living.scotsman.com.
- "Totally Looped". totallylooped.co.uk.
- "Sanjeev Bhaskar is the new Chancellor of the University of Sussex". 23 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-24.
- "Sanjeev Bhaskar fronts Wildseed pilot". broadcastnow.co.uk.
- Charlotte Wareing (17 April 2015). "Asian Awards 2015: All the winners from the star-studded bash". mirror.
- "Doctor Who: Sanjeev Bhaskar to guest star". Telegraph.co.uk. 11 July 2014.
- Sanjeev Bhaskar at the Internet Movie Database
- "Casting" (MP3). earachevoices.com.
- Q&A - The Guardian, 2008-09-20. Retrieved 2009-6-29.
- bbc.co.uk - Desert Island Disks: Sanjeev Bhaskar