Nach Baliye 9 is set to premiere on July 19 on Star Plus. Bollywood superstar Salman Khan, who is also producing the show, will unveil the 12 jodis. Interestingly, apart from real-life celebrity couples, the season will, for the first time, also welcome former couples.
The promos of the series have had a mystery element to it, with partners of the contestants not being revealed yet. Even during the recently held press meet, the contestants were being secretive about their ‘baliyes’. Naagin 3 star Anita Hassanandani, who will be seen competing with husband Rohit Reddy, made it a point to not even name her better half throughout the media interactions.
At the sidelines of the event, Anita sat down with indianexpress.com to talk more about Nach Baliye 9, the new format, her love for Salman Khan and more.
Excerpts from the conversation:
Although the world knows that you are participating with Rohit Reddy, does it get difficult to keep it under wraps?
Well, I am trying. It is tough because most people know or can even guess who I could be participating with. All that I can say is that I am really excited to participate with my baliye. We are all set and ready to give our 100 percent. As much as we are excited, we are also very nervous. I think it will all settle in only after our first performance.
You have also been approached for the show earlier. What was about this season that you decided to finally give in?
I think everything just fell in beautifully. I have always believed that a show like this requires a lot of hard work, focus and time. When I did Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa along with Yeh Hai Mohabbetin, I couldn’t do justice to both. This offer came when Naagin 3 had ended and so I knew I could do well this time. I spoke to my baliye and that was actually the toughest task (laughs). But he knew this is a show I have always wanted to do and so we are here. I think sometimes things are just meant to happen.
How did your family react to you both doing Nach Baliye?
They are so excited. I think even more than me. My parents and in-laws are just ecstatic and waiting for the show to launch. I think they had been hoping for us to be on the show for long.
What’s your take on the new format of ex-couples also participating?
I think it is really interesting. The show is also coming back after two years, so there’s a lot of excitement around the season. It is also nice to see people being so evolved that they are ready to work with their exes. This could be a start to a new bond or relationship. They could become great friends or fall in love all over again. Even as an audience, I would like to see how their journey pans out.
Would you have come on the show with your former lover?
I am a little old fashioned and don’t think I would be comfortable. Even when I got married, people were living in with their partners but I wanted to cement my relationship with marriage. I think it is all about the individual’s choice and we shouldn’t even be judgmental about it.
But do you feel real jodis will have an advantage over former couples in the competition?
For sure, at least in the initial rounds. See, when you are a couple, you can talk, discuss whatever you want to. But eventually, with them also spending so much time together, they are bound to develop a comfort level and chemistry. It will be a long road ahead and they will also figure their way out.
You are a popular face on television. Do you feel that will help you garner more votes?
I am not thinking about that for now. I just want to give my best. My fans have always supported me in whatever I did, and I know they will be there this time too. But I want to perform well so that they genuinely enjoy and vote for me.
You have always been a Salman Khan fan. How was it working with him in the premiere episode?
It was amazing. I was really excited that he has turned producer for the show. And it’s always fun to be around someone you adore. Also, the premiere night, I was so love-struck that the long hours of shoot seemed nothing.
Lastly, we have been told that you would be featuring in Naagin 4. Any truth to that?
I really have no idea about it. Right now, I just want to focus on Nach Baliye. Also, if you have followed my journey, I take up whatever I feel right at that moment. So, we will see what lies ahead.
While Raveena Tandon, Ahmed Khan and Ali Abbas Zafar will judge Nach Baliye 9, Maniesh Paul will host it.
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