Director Meralapaka Gandhi says there were several instances on the sets of forthcoming Telugu entertainer "Express Raja" where actor Sharwanand totally caught him off guard with his performance. "I knew he was a talented actor. But I had no idea he's someone who can improvise so easily on the sets. There were so many scenes where he performed beyond my expectations. I was shocked by his performance," Gandhi told IANS. The film, which also stars Surbhi, Harish Uthaman and Brahmaji, is slated to release on January 14 worldwide. Throwing more light on the experience of working with Sharwanand, the director said: "I thoroughly enjoyed directing him. You don't always get to work with actors who are so accommodative." "Express Raja" is Gandhi's sophomore film after the hugely successful "Venkatadri Expressa. He says the 'Express' in the title of his new film is not a sentiment he carried forward from his last outing. "The 'Express' part of the title suits the hero's character the best. He plays a character that does everything a tad faster than others. Because of which the screenplay, as the film progresses, gets racier," he said, and added there's a surprising element every 20 minutes in the film. These sporadic surprises, according to Gandhi, will ensure the film is different. Gandhi has started working on his next project and says he lets his script choose the actors. "I never write with an actor in mind, because I believe then you automatically write it in a way to please him. I think that's not healthy and that's what happens in the case of most star-studded projects," he said.