“Personally, I am not at all sarvagun sampanna. I am so flawed,” shared Shrenu Parikh, while talking about her upcoming show Ek Bhram – Sarvagun Sampanna. As the title suggests, Shrenu’s character Janhvi will not be the usual television bahu. Though she will come across as a perfect daughter-in-law, she will have ulterior motives to destroy the family.
Shrenu recently visited the 1000-year-old heritage ‘saas bahu’ temple in Udaipur to promote the daily. At the sidelines of the event, the actor sat down for an exclusive chat with indianexpress.com. She talked about attempting a grey character for the first time, her extensive preparation and walking the thin line between a bahu and vamp.
Excerpts from the conversation:
From what we have seen in the promos, the show is quite different. What made you take this up?
I was still shooting for Ishqbaaaz when I auditioned for it. The next day when I met my producer (Deepti Kalwani), she told me more about the character. I instantly told her I can’t do it. But she was convinced about me and told me that we will prepare you well. Honestly, I never thought I would be able to pull off an anti-heroine role. But I feel the audience relates more to grey characters and vengeance is a very normal emotion. Seeing the way people are excited about it, I really feel proud that I did the show.
So how did you prepare for the role?
Oh, I watched a lot of films. I also went through many workshops. I saw Nargis’ film Din Raat and even Split. Janhvi, my character, doesn’t have a split personality, but sometimes she needs to change her emotions quickly. I wanted to learn how to do that. Also, I did theatre workshops and learned about animal instincts. A lot of work went there and now I am confident of getting into the skin of Janhvi.
While you worked so much for a character, there is a notion that TV is an easy job.
I know and it is so sad. I think television actors work the most and it is an everyday struggle. With this character, even performing just one scene leaves you so exhausted mentally. I really feel TV takes much more from you than it gives. We work for 15-16 hours every day. We have no personal life and we sacrifice a lot. So I really don’t like that people look down upon the medium.
On television, it is usually the good bahus or vamps. Do you feel the audience will be ready to accept a character that is both?
I believe that if Shah Rukh Khan would have thought so much before signing Baazigar, he wouldn’t have been where he is. This is not a typical saas-bahu saga where we will have a perfect bahu. And Janhvi is also not a vamp but a very complex and layered character. She has her own reasons and with due time, the audience will get to know about it.
Your last show Ishqbaaaz witnessed a sudden leap, paving the way out for you and other actors. As an actor, did that affect you?
Personally, I really believe that every good thing comes to an end. It was the producers’ call, and so I can’t comment on it. But yes, it was sad because the show was very close to my heart. The kind of friendship and bond that I found, it is for life. And when Ishqbaaaz got over, we realised it remained the same. So it is all good.
Iss Pyaar Ko Kya Naam Doon…Dobara or Ishqbaaaz, what has been your turning point?
Aastha from Iss Pyaar Ko Kya Naam Doon…Dobara will always stay close to me. I am so like her. And I think that was a turning point for me as after that show I got Dil Boley Oberoi and Ishqbaaaz. I also hope that the audience now loves me as Janhvi.