Television’s popular star Jennifer Winget has made her digital debut with Code M. The ALTBalaji and ZEE5 show also stars Tanuj Virwani as the male lead.
In an exclusive conversation with indianexpress.com, Jennifer and Tanuj talked about Code M and the experience of working together. They also addressed rumours of their affair.
Here are excerpts from the conversation.
What was your first reaction when Code M came to you?
Jennifer: Actually I was a little unsure, although I really wanted to do it. I have already done romance, emotional and even revenge dramas. This was something really new. So when it was offered to me, I was praying from my heart and soul that it works out. When you don the uniform, there is a certain kind of responsibility you feel. I was over the moon when it worked out, and here I am, as Major Monica Mehra.
Tell us something about Code M.
Tanuj: Well, it’s too classified an operation to share with the public (laughs). However, it’s a show with an army background. There’s a case that has to be solved. And Monica Mehra is given the job to dig deep and find out. That’s what Code M is all about.
Jennifer, did you have any kind of apprehension regarding the digital medium?
Jennifer: I have worked with Balaji before, and they know how I am, and vice versa. I knew they would offer me a project, knowing exactly what I like. And I am grateful that I got this show as my web debut.
Q. Tanuj, the digital medium definitely boosted your career. When you started, did you feel the medium would go on to grow this way?
Tanuj: The digital medium has actually given me a career. When I started, it was looked down upon. People would say that when you don’t get films, you do web. It has been a crazy transformative journey. One gets to experiment with roles, which you wouldn’t get to essay in a movie. It’s a longer format now, and one can build characters without falling in the trap of five songs, and the typical hero-heroine-villain stories. On the web, all characters are actually grey, just like in life.
Q. How was it working together?
Tanuj: The funny thing is that Jennifer and I go a long way. We had met at a house party through common friends ages back, and we didn’t really remember it. Work-wise, she is my senior and I am her senior when it comes to the web medium. So it was an interesting dynamic between us, and it was really refreshing to work with her. Also, our characters are not typical leads.
Jennifer: I remember we met at the first reading, and we instantly hit it off. It was really easy to be around him. Also, I would say that not just us, we also bonded really well with our director Akshay Choubey. All three of us would be bouncing ideas off each other. It was an effortless and amazing experience.
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Giving you a sneak peek into some fun light hearted moments till you are introduced to the real deal tomorrow on @altbalaji and @zee5premium ONLY ONE DAY TO GO FOR #CODEM I just have to thank @akshayindahouse for being my guiding light all through the show and even after. On to this absolute cracker of an actor and best human being ever!! @tanujvirwani It’s only upwards and onwards now!! And Mr. Rajat Kapoor what can I say, it has been my absolute honour to have gotten the opportunity to work with you. @ektaravikapoor and @samkhan No words will spell out thank you enough. Thank you for entrusting Monica Mehra to me and giving me the reigns to run with your vision of her. Code M has been a life changing opportunity for me. To the show’e writers, ADs, our DOP Shaanu and our entire extended cast and crew. Thank you so much for making me look, speak and be Major Monica Mehra to the T! I think together, we’ve really cracked the code!;) #onemoredaytogo
Q. Was there any kind of special preparation to play army officers?
Jennifer: Akshay really played a vital role here. Coming from television, I was used to a certain kind of acting, where one has to spoon feed every emotion. So sometimes, I would go a little loud or overboard, and he would kindly ask me to tone it down. Other than that, the preparation required some fitness.
Q. Recently, there was a buzz that you both are dating. Do such rumours in any way affect your friendship?
Jennifer: Can you see any changes?
Tanuj: It was clearly someone’s imagination, so it doesn’t really matter.
Produced by Samar Khan, Code M also stars Rajat Kapoor, Keshav Sadhana and Aalekh Kapoor among others.