Shooting in the Covid-19 era: Male actors Sudhanshu Pandey, Tushar Dalvi, Nishant Malkani resort to self makeup on set
Since TV shoots resumed, Tushar Dalvi has been reporting two hours before call time on the set. The reason being, apart from prepping for his character, the actor is also doing his own makeup because of the social distancing norms and precautions in place. And he is not alone, actors Sudhanshu Pandey, Nishant Malkani, Deven Bhojani, Shaleen Malhotra, Paresh Ganatra, Karan Jotwani, among others, who’ve never done their makeup earlier, have been doing it in this Covid era.
Dalvi, who plays titular role in Mere Sai - Shraddha Aur Saburi, tells us, “It would earlier take 45-50 minutes, now I take about one-hour-30-minutes to get ready. Sticking the beard properly is also a task. Then different shades and tones are required to suit outdoor, indoor scenes, cloudy and sunny weather too.”
Long hours outdoors is also a concern, given the Covid-19 outbreak. “We come to the set early for the sanitisation and checking that happens, and then the makeup. But we’ve to adjust. Work can’t stop, or else it would be difficult for many to survive,” adds Dalvi.
Actors Deven Bhojani and Paresh Ganatra, too, have been reaching the sets of their show, Bhakharwadi, early. “We are not as good as professionals, so sometimes, things go wrong,” admits Bhojani.
While actors are trying their best to adjust to the new normal, good thing is that makeup artists also have their jobs intact. They are present on the set to guide actors.
Makeup artist Vishal Vilas Pathare, who’s been a part of Mere Sai for three years, says, “Makeup kits are sanitised and kept ready. After proper sanitisation, we wear a mask and the PPE kit and then wait for the actor to start doing the makeup. Since they aren’t professional, they do take time even with guidance.”
Shaleen Malhotra started learning makeup tricks at home, five days before he resumed shooting for Mere Dad Ki Dulhan. “Face makeup is manageable, but I find it difficult to do my hair. I’m learning that, too,” says the actor, who brings his makeup kit home to sanitise.
Earlier, Malhotra was being guided via video call by makeup artist Saif Shaikh, but that didn’t work out. “Now, I stand at a distance and tell him what foundation, brush etc to use and how,” reveals Shaikh.
To avoid physical proximity, actors are now doing their touch up, too. Sudhanshu Pandey, who’s shooting for Anupamaa, says, “At times, we sweat or get exhausted and our face looks dull. My makeup artist (Atanu Koley) holds the mirror, I do the touch up. We’ve got this face fixer spray now that’s made life simpler.”
With actors doing makeup does leave the makeup artists more free time at hand. “Guidance and all are fine, but it feels bad that we’re are getting paid but not being able to do the work ourselves,” says Pathare.
Despite having less work, makeup artists are happy that there is at least some income. “Kitne din baith sakte hai ghar pe? It was getting difficult to make ends meet,” says Koley.
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Author tweets @Shreya_MJ