Divyanka Tripathi: Ensured my acting wasn't over-the-top
TV's favourite bahu Divyanka Tripathi on tailoring her craft as she makes her web debut with Coldd Lassi Aur Chicken Masala
Grateful as she is to have found a memorable role in Yeh Hai Mohabbatein, Divyanka Tripathi is ready to shake things up. The actor has stepped out of her zone to experiment with her first web series, Coldd Lassi Aur Chicken Masala on ALTBalaji and Zee5. So, what has her first brush with the digital medium taught her? Quite a bit, she enthuses, as she settles down for a chat with mid-day.
Edited excerpts from the interview.
The show's posters came out a year ago. Why did it take so long for it to release?
Ekta [Kapoor] had faith in the series, so we shot for the posters and released them last year. We began shooting only in February and wrapped up the shoot last month. So, there was no delay per se.
You play a cook in the series. Do you have any culinary experience?
I learnt basic cooking for the show. A chef had come down to the set to teach me to cut vegetables. I am a vegetarian and my first class required me to prepare a chicken dish! [Laughs] Cutting vegetables is not too difficult. But since I play a chef, I had to be skilled enough to chop vegetables without even looking at them; that was tough.
What was your takeaway from your first web series?
I learnt to be patient. As a TV actor, I am used to working at a fast pace. I would wrap up the shoot of Yeh Hai Mohabbatein [YHM] and report to this set. Pradeep dada [Sarkar, director] would ask me how many scenes I shot for YHM. When I would tell him that we filmed 20 to 25 scenes in three hours, he would be shocked [laughs]. Here, we would film three to five scenes in a day. The other thing I learnt was to underplay my acting. On television, we emote a lot. But the requirement is different here. So, I had to take care about not being over-the-top.
How was it working with Pradeep Sarkar?
He has amazing visualisation. He sits near the monitor, and it's almost as if he is painting a canvas from there. His clarity regarding a shot is commendable — he knows exactly what props should be on the set and which actors should be included in a shot. I learnt new things while working with Pradeep dada and would assist him. I started behaving like his assistant director.
Did it inspire you to go behind the camera?
I would love to learn the process, but I have no dreams of directing.
Rajeev Khandelwal and you are coming on screen together for the first time.
Rajeev is a supportive co-actor but quite mischievous. He would often pull my leg about my cooking skills because he is a good cook and I was just learning.
Rumours suggest that YHM will go off air.
The show's TRPs have hit the roof, so there's no reason to end it. So many kitchens are running because of the show. When everyone involved is so happy working on it, I am no one to step back and steal so many livelihoods.
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