'People will compare me with Chi Chi mama'
Aarti Singh, Govinda's niece is back after a long hiatus.
The actress is starring in Thoda Hai Bas Thode Ki Zaroorat Hai, a new TV show on Colors based on a Maharastrian household.
Goldie Behl (producer) said the show is a tribute to his in-laws; he says he was inspired by seeing his wife's (Sonali Bendre) family.
So how does Aarti fit into the show? Rajul Hegde finds out. Excerpts:
You're back after a long break
Yes. I have been working hard to reduce my weight for the last one year. I was religiously following my diet and workout. I also gave about 40-50 auditions during this period. I got lots of offers for a parallel lead but I wanted to play the main lead. I was confident that I would get to play a lead role some day [smiles].
Tell us about your character?
I play Mugdha, the eldest daughter-in law of the Kulkarni family. She is a dedicated bahu who will go to any lengths to keep her family together. The mother-in-law works in a papad factory, while the daughter-in-law takes care of the entire family.
How did you manage to get the lead role?
I was selected for this show after three auditions. I am not from Mumbai so my Marathi is not so good. I could see that the producers were a bit worried when I was reading my lines. But I managed to master it in 3-4 days with the help of my co-stars and the production team.
So did you take Marathi classes?
No. My entire family except me speaks Marathi very well. I took their help. I also told my maid to speak to me only in Marathi. That helped a lot.
Image: Aarti Singh
'Govindaji got emotional when he saw me in a sari'
How much can you relate to your character?
Aarti cannot sacrifice as much as Mugdha because the situations and background they come from are very different. But we both are very emotional people. Family too matters a lot for both of us.
Your entire family is into this industry, what kind of relationship do you share with them?
We share a very nice relationship. I was at Govindaji's place when he saw my promos for the first time. He was very happy for me. He even got emotional when he saw me in a sari.
Your cousin Ragini Khanna already has Sasural Genda Phool on a different channel. In fact your show and hers share the same time slot. What was her reaction?
She was very happy for me. We are very close. People say there is competition because her show is also at same time. But there is no rivalry because her character is different from mine and also we have a different set of audience.
What was your brother Krushna Abhishek's reaction?
Krushna is my elder brother, my best friend and my father. I have got a three in one relationship with him. My biological mother passed away when I was a month old. My mother's best friend and her cousin babhi adopted me. So I lived with them in Lucknow. I came to Mumbai six years ago. I was very much in touch with my brother Krushna and would meet him twice a year. Recently he called me when he saw my picture in one of the newspapers because I was in Lucknow. He is very happy for me and the only advice he gives me now is that Moti mat hona ab (don't put on weight).
Image: Neena Kulkarni and Aarti Singh
'Kashmera and I get along very well now'
You share a good relationship with all your family members. What kind of relation do you share with Kashmera (Kurshna's girl friend)?
Kashmera and I get along very well now. If she doesn't like a person she will tell them to their face. So lots of people dislike her for her straight forwardness. Initially I too had lot of differences with her but everything is fine now. My brother's happiness is important to me because he loves Kash.
You belong to a family where comedy comes naturally. Would you also like to try this genre?
People will definitely start comparing me with Chi Chi mama (Govinda) who was excellent in comedy and Krushna followed him. I am scared of this but definitely I would love to give it a try in one of the comedy shows.
Image: Aarti Singh