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Do Replacing Actors In Popular TV Series Work?

In popular TV serials the on-screen characters played by actors seem so real that it becomes difficult to separate the two. Audience not only falls in love with these screen characters but start empathizing, sympathizing and identifying with them. So be it Tulsi (Smriti Irani) in Kyonki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi; Manav (Sushant Singh Rajput) in Pavitra Rishta or Dayaben (Disha Vakani) in Tarak Mehta Ka Ulta Chasma they all became synonymous with the characters. So, this brings us to the larger question, can these stars be replaced? When Shaheer Shaikh was announced as a replacement for Manav in the popular TV serial Pavitra Rishta 2 played by Sushant Singh Rajput (SSR) the producers, pressurized by SSR’s fan club, had to clarify that Shaheer was replacing Hiten Tejwani, the second Manav as he was not accepted by the audience. Likewise Smriti Irani had to come back as the audience refused to accept Gautami as Tulsi in Kyonki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu. The makers of Tarak Mehta Ka Olthah Chashma have been waiting for over three years for Dayaben (Disha Vakani) to return to the show instead of replacing her. In Ballika Vadhu Shashank Vyas as Jagya was a huge hit. So, when he decided to move out of the serial, the makers showed him going to the US so that the audience continues to wait for him to return to the show.