Shefali Shah knows exactly what she wants from life and has a reputation of being brutally honest. The actor believes that life is all about balancing things and makes sure that her work doesn't hamper her personal space. Shefali, who will be seen next in Zoya Akhtar's Dil Dhadakne Do, is also excited about the response she is getting as the host of Savdhaan India. The show marks her comeback to the small screen after a gap of 15 years. Excerpts from a chat:
The trailer of Dil Dhadakne Do has earned rave reviews. Tell us about your character Neelam Mehra.
Neelam Mehra is a queen bee who is very vulnerable but she hides it from everyone. She belongs to a society, where people put a mask and face the world. She is also wicked and has a very sharp humour. She looks tough from outside but is actually a weak woman who had made a number of compromises in life.
Was it difficult relating to the character?
I do relate to her in a certain way but unlike me, Neelam Mehra is a far more guarded person. I am what you get to see. I am brutally honest and my husband (producer-director Vipul Shah) regrets that quite often (Laughs). I also don't hide my vulnerability.
You have worked with Anil Kapoor and Farhan Akhtar in the past as well.
Yes, it was a pleasure working with both Anil and Farhan again. They are fabulous actors and are very professionals which help in a way. They too are very good human beings.
Shefali Shah plays Neelam Mehra in Dil Dhadakne Do.
How was it working with Zoya?
She is fun to work with. Zoya is someone who knows everything. She planned everything really well because it is very difficult to handle a film which is being made on such a large canvas. By canvas I mean there are so many characters in the film and Zoya has beautifully painted each their stories and moments in the film.
Are you doing any other Bollywood film? How about working in Bengali films given that you have already worked with the likes of Aparna Sen and late Rituparno Ghosh?
I recently finished shooting for Karan Malhotra's Brothers which stars Akshay Kumar and Sidharth Malhotra. I would also love to do Bengali films. Working with Aparna di and Ritu da helped me grow as an actor. I have some fond memories of working with them.
What made you say yes to Savdhaan India?
Firstly, I could relate to the show. Secondly, it's an inspirational show. The show narrates incidents that happened to people like us and it's inspirational because these people fought back. Selfishly speaking, this show also works for me because it doesn't consume too much of my time. I am left with enough time for family and friends and to write and paint after shooting for the show. In short, I can still have a life.
You are doing television after 15 years. Any plans of doing fiction?
If the show is finite show, then I will certainly do it. I can't do a show that will go on forever at this point. The role must also be really good and the concept of the show must be good.
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