Dipika Kakar Ibrahim is all set to play a small screen star in Kahaan Hum Kahaan Tum. Karan V Grover, who plays a surgeon, will share screen space with Dipika. The romantic saga will bring to life the story of two individuals from different worlds falling in love. Bollywood superstar Saif Ali Khan had turned narrator for the show and introduced the characters in the first promo.
Dipika rose to fame playing the titular role in Sasural Simar Ka. It was also the show where she met and fell in love with Shoaib Ibrahim. The two actors tied the knot last year in February. After playing a cameo in Qayamat Ki Raat, Dipika went on to participate in Bigg Boss 12 which she even won.
As she gears up to get back to the world of serials, the actor sat down for an exclusive chat with indianexpress.com. Dipika spoke at length about her new project, the pressure of her profession and the advantages of being married to someone from the same field.
Excerpts from the conversation:
How does it feel reliving your life onscreen?
Honestly and surprisingly, it was a little difficult initially. I have never been so natural on-screen. The director had to tell me to go a little over-board. But once I caught hold of the note, it has been going really well. Seeing the outcome of my homework makes me proud. Also, the show is in a very refreshing setup, so it feels great. I remember my spot dada was shocked when I went in for my scene wearing a kurti and pair of jeans.
But how much of reality about the television industry will we get to see?
A lot actually. We have created the same environment and tried to project whatever goes behind the shooting space. We have really tried to pool in most realities. But we are not putting it down or criticising it. We are rather showing that although there is a lot of effort involved, we love doing it. We have kept a balance and tried to present everything close to reality.
In a time when the audience is presented with supernatural and OTT dramas, do you feel they will enjoy a realistic show?
Definitely. I really feel that variety works on television. And being realistic doesn’t mean we don’t have a gripping and emotional connect in the storyline. Our show has humour, romance, drama and a lot more. Also, the audience today is very curious to know what goes behind the shoot of TV serials. This will be the perfect window for them. For those young watchers who consider dailies unrealistic, there’s Rohit (Karan V Grover’s character) who is very real and different. This is a well-packaged show, which has something for everyone.
From what we have got to know, Divyanka Tripathi was approached for the role first. Does being the second option hurt the ego of actors?
Not at all. Interestingly, Divyanka has even done a cameo for us. And I am so thankful to her for taking time out for us. When we met, she was really happy for me. I think through this show, people will also realise that TV actresses have no egos. We are more like sisters in the same boat, trying to console each other (laughs) about our hectic schedule. I feel it was all destiny that this show came my way.
Do you feel it also happened at the right time, with you becoming much more popular after your Bigg Boss win?
Of course, the excitement that fans have about this show makes me overwhelmed. Sandiip Sikcand (producer) had called me even before I took up Bigg Boss. I was really excited about the concept but even before we could do the look test, I went into the reality show. Earlier this year, he reached out again saying he couldn’t find anyone for the role, and I was on-board instantly. Funnily though, Sandiip told me he felt that I won’t do the show now that I am a Bigg Boss winner (laughs).
Do you feel television welcomes more married actors than Bollywood?
The horizon on TV is very huge. There are all kinds of shows being made, be it mature love stories or fictionalised reality. Look at Deepika Padukone, Kareena Kapoor or even Sonam Kapoor, all of them are doing so well in their own space. And neither have their popularity seen any decline. But yes, TV has never had those boundaries.
You made your Bollywood debut with Paltan. Didn’t you want to pursue it further?
I am very happy in this space. I am quite a proud TV actor. The connect and love I receive through the small screen has no comparison. Also, I have never strived or hungered to be in films. All I want to do is good work, be in any medium.
You were already quite petite and now you have lost close to eight kgs again for this show. Do you feel stardom can be too pressurising?
I think it’s all a package. Being a celebrity or known face has a lot of advantages. This is one of the disadvantages, but only for a foodie like me (laughs). And honestly, it is not so pressurising. When you see yourself looking good onscreen or being showered with compliments, it automatically pushes you to do it.
While your show presents a love story between people of two different professions, is it easier for you in real life, with Shoaib, also being an actor?
Of course, it becomes really easy as he knows the demand of the profession. He also knows the technicalities, so if I message him saying ‘only the OS shot is left’, he wouldn’t be confused and know that it is an over the shoulder shot. But at the end of the day, it all depends on the understanding you have with your partner and even family. Now that I will be getting busy with shoots, I know my in-laws are there to handle everything. That helps me stay focused on work.