Actor Shamita Shetty recently appeared in a Punjabi music video, “Teri Maa”, directed by her brother-in-law, Shilpa Shetty’s businessman husband, Raj Kundra, and presented by T-Series. It is a fun song about a man sandwiched between his girlfriend and his mother.
Shamita in an interview with indianexpress.com, spoke about the song, and also opened up about her struggles in Bollywood and her next international project, The Tenant.
Here are some excerpts from the interview:
Q. Why did you decide to be a part of such a quirky Punjabi dance number?
I honestly did this because it was a lot of fun, I didn’t do it as a career move or anything. My brother-in-law started his music label and this song is for that. He was directing it and asked me if I would like to be in it. So, I thought it was cute and I don’t know if I would ever have the opportunity to work with him in the future because I don’t know if he is interested in directing anything more in the future. It is also home turf, and most importantly when he make me hear the song, I loved it as it is colourful and light. I had a lot of fun while shooting it, they shot it in one day and I think they have done a great job. I don’t really understand Punjabi but my brother-in-law actually explained the lyrics to me, and it is a cute song.
Q. You have been a part of the Hindi film industry for almost twenty years now. What do you think was a highlight of your career and what do you think you could have done better?
For me, I would definitely say Zeher (2005). Zeher was one of my best, there was so much that I discovered in myself as an actor while working on that film. It wouldn’t be fair for me to take any name to discuss what could have been better, it is all in the part. I don’t think I would like to look back at my career and pick out such points to be very honest because I am where I am because of my choices. I am not the sort to mull over the choices that I have made in my past and feel bad about it. What has happened has happened, I have learnt from very experience in my life and I would like to keep moving ahead.
Q. What is that one regret you will always have about Bollywood?
The industry has made me a stronger person. I joined the industry with the best, a Yash Raj film (Mohabbatein in 2000). But it has not been an easy journey for me post that. I had to settle down with the kind of work I did to an extent. Some of the work that came my way was really good, but today when I look at myself, I know I have become a stronger person. This is what I say to a lot of people who ask me that what is that one advice I would give to someone who wants to join the industry. This is not a place for people who are emotionally very weak. You have to be a very strong person to survive in the industry like this. It has extreme highs and extreme lows.
When I was facing these lows, I had a very strong support system, my family. I have great friends. When I doubt myself, they are there to show me the mirror, to show me who I am, and show me my own strengths sometimes.
Q. Your sister Shilpa is making a comeback in films, are you also looking at returning on the big screen?
Every thing I do can’t be a comeback. When I did a web-series some time back people thought it was my comeback, infact I have just done a film and it will release by end of this year or start of next year, it is called The Tenant.
As far as my sister is concerned, I am so happy and so excited that she is finally coming on the big screen. I have been telling her this for so long, she is looking her best now, and I think it is about time that she continues doing films.
Also, I feel that we are living in a time where the kind of work we are seeing is so different than before, it is more content driven now. The characters actors are getting to portray now are much better than before. With web coming into play, it has given us more options to do work. Subjects that were not explored before are being showcased now on the web. So, I think it is a great time for her to come back.
Q. Can you tell us more about The Tenant?
It is an international project. It is directed by Sushrut Jain, he has made an award-winning documentary called Beyond Boundaries. It is on Netflix and it is about cricket. He is a fantastic filmmaker, and the subject he has chosen is so real, and people will relate to every character in this film. It is about the journey of a girl who has come from a different world, into a very conservative society. Nobody knows her background, nobody knows what she is hiding. All we know is that she is hiding something and when that is revealed, the kind of hypocrisy she has to face is mind boggling. It basically revolves around the hypocrisy in our society that we live in today. It is a lot about the issues we deal today. It is a beautiful story, very real, and I am actually excited about this one.