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All work, no play

Working 24X7 gets pretty stressful for telly stars. Anil Merani on TV celebs who can and can’t handle the gruelling hours.

tv Updated: Jan 03, 2008 15:02 IST
Anil Merani

When Eva Grower returned to television with Gupshup Coffee Shop, everyone was amazed by how quickly she had lost all those extra kilos following motherhood.

But a few weeks into the shooting of Gupshup... the actress started to feeling rather weak and even fainted a couple of times. She’d gone on a crash diet and the side effects were showing up.

“I also had to stay awake most nights because of my nine-month old baby. That made things worse,”she sighs. In an attempt to pump up the energy, Grower is stocking up on vitamin supplements and incorporating fruits in her diet.

Same boat
Ali Merchant , who’s working in two daily soaps simultaneously hasn’t fainted.. yet. But Merchant, who plays the lover boy in both Amber Dhara and Ek Thi Rajkumari, admits that working 24X7 can get pretty stressful. Merchant jokes that since Akshat in Amber Dhara is currently pining for one of the conjoined twins, looking tired and washed outworks for the role.

On a more serious note, the actor agrees that stress could catch up with him at some point but defends his decision.

“It’s a risk I’m willing to take. Amber Dhara and Ek Thi... are major opportunities. I wasn’t willing to lose either,” he says.

Calling it quits
While the young artistes are struggling with the erratic hours, Amar Talwar ( Shanti and Jassi Jaisi Koi Nahi), has nearly quit the
medium.

The actor is currently doing a walk-on role in Bindass’ Sunn Yaar Chill Maar.

“I took it on only because I have a soft spot for UTV. I’ve been promised that I won’t be required to shoot for more than a couple of days a month,” he says.

The actor grouses about the unpleasant working conditions including lousy make-up vans, sharing cloakrooms and the quality of food on sets.

But what bugs him most is the fact that he is expected to make polite conversation between shots.

“I’d much rather curl up with a book,”he says.

“I consider myself lucky that I can do without the stress of television. At 58, it’s not
my cup of tea.”

(With inputs fro Janaki Viswanathan)