Kundali Bhagya actor Dheeraj Dhoopar has been at home for more than 45 days, after the shoots were halted due to the coronavirus outbreak. While he has been missing work, the constant conversation with his co-stars on WhatsApp is making up for the lost time.
In an exclusive chat with indianexpress.com, the actor spoke about his lockdown experience, how he cooked for his wife, actor Vinny Arora for the first time and more.
Excerpts from the conversation.
How much are you missing work?
I miss being on shoots. I am just waiting for things to turn normal soon. I really can’t wait to go back to the sets and act again.
There is bound to be a lot of change in the way things function on set.
Absolutely, we will need to maintain social distancing for a long time, maybe till we have a vaccine. We will need to make new sets of rules and regulations. We will have to work with a minimum set of people in the unit, and that too in rotation. I also feel that maybe the team should stay in one place, so they can avoid traveling in public transport. That’s the only way we will be able to maintain proper precaution. I am hopeful that things will be good again.
How have you been keeping yourself occupied during the lockdown?
I have been working out a lot, and also spending time with my wife. We also have dogs, and this is the first time after many months, that I am spending so much time at home. This is the only reason I am taking the situation in a positive way. My wife is a great cook, and she keeps pampering me with some amazing recipes. In the last 10 years of us knowing each other, this was also the first time I entered the kitchen and cooked her a packet of noodles.
How do you remain positive?
Honestly, there are times when I actually want to just go out. It’s so frustrating at times. But one has to realise this is for a greater good, and we all need to be in it together. I usually watch a good film or series when I am upset. I then imagine myself to be the hero of the same, and that instantly makes me feel better.
Can you suggest some good titles for your fans to watch?
Well, the flavour of the season is definitely Money Heist. I also watched The Hero and Goodfellas, and really enjoyed them. You is a series that I watched earlier but since I really like the lead guy, I am rewatching it. There are so many other shows and films but I can’t think of it at the moment.
What are the kind of conversations that you and your Kundali Bhagya co-stars are having during this time?
We have fun conversations and try to motivate each other. We hardly get time when we are working, and this has become a great way to get to know each other better.
Daily wage workers have been affected the most after shoots got halted. Has that been a topic of discussion ever?
Our production house is taking care of things right now, and all of us are also committed towards the team. I am quite approachable to my unit for any kind of help. As an individual also, I have been trying to do my best for the people around me. We have paid our help, security people in advance, so that they are well taken care of.
As you know, the audience has been lapping up the reruns of past shows. Do you feel the current serials will have a tough time winning back its audience?
For the older generation, it was a great way to relive their days by watching these shows. I know it has even garnered big numbers but I have always believed that the audience is hungry for good content. We have a huge audience and there is scope for every one. These mythological shows are also finite, and I feel till the time we are back, they would have already wrapped up. But it was a great move to re-air these shows during this time. And I am also sure, Kundali Bhagya fans would be excited to watch their favourite show again.
Also starring Shraddha Arya in the lead role, Kundali Bhagya airs on Zee TV.
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