'Pavitra Rishta is my show.'
'I created that character and it is not easy to let go, especially for someone like me who is so attached to things from the past, to memories and emotions.'
Ankita Lokhande made her debut with Pavitra Rishta way back in 2009, opposite Sushant Singh Rajput.
Now, the actress returns in the show's reboot.
"It is a very big thing like even after 12 years, she (Ekta Kapoor) still believes in me as a lead. By God's grace, I still look the same, otherwise, it would have been very difficult," Ankita tells Rediff.com Contributor Prateek Sur.
Shaheer Sheikh is very popular, but don’t you think Manav's popularity demanded a bigger star?
No, we did not want a star.
We wanted someone who is a real and ordinary man and can carry off the character.
You do not need a star to make a show popular.
Even I am doing this show, and I am not a big star.
I feel Shaheer has a bigger fan following than me.
Also, when people see Pavitra Rishta, if they see Ankita Lokhande, then I have failed at my job. They need to see Archana. The same goes for Shaheer.
He is looking like Manav.
If I can feel that he is looking like Manav, then he is Manav. Nobody can know Manav more than me, right?
You have been one of the few actresses who started from television and went on to do well in films. Is it difficult for a TV actress to get roles in movies?
Yes. I feel you have to create your own destiny.
You have to make it happen for yourself.
I have decided that one day, I will make my own films. I will write them and do every possible thing in them.
I am that talented to create it. I know that.
Also, I don't need anyone.
I feel even Godfathers are sent by God only, right? I believe in God.
I have seen my journey from Indore to here where I am today.
Pavitra Rishta was your debut show. How different is going back to playing the same character after seven years?
I could not leave Pavitra Rishta.
Archana was always there in my life.
It's like when you create something and you respect that (you can't let go that easily).
Pavitra Rishta is my show.
I created that character and it is not easy to let go, especially for someone like me who is so attached to things from the past, to memories and emotions.
I still remember the last day of the Pavitra Rishta shoot, and I was crying for almost 10 days continuously.
I was like how do I just let it go, what do I do now...
I cannot let go very easily.
Did you give Ekta Kapoor the idea of the show's reboot?
Ekta had offered me something; she was saying 'I want to work with you again'.
The idea of Pavitra Rishta was always there in my mind, and I instantly said to her, 'Let's do Pavitra Rishta.'
It was her show and she did not expect me to say that.
She immediately said yes, and spoke to the right people in ZEE5, and started working on it.
Now, here we are.
It is a very big thing like even after 12 years, she still believes in me as a lead.
By God's grace, I still look the same, otherwise, it would have been very difficult.
What emotions were going through your mind when you were getting ready to play Archana once again?
It is acting. You are just performing.
You don't connect to the emotions, you just connect to the character.
But there are times when I listen to the song Aasman Mein Jab Tak Sitare and it gives me goosebumps.
I have a lot of memories, feelings and nostalgia attached to this.
I have lived this song for years.
This song is so beautiful that you connect with it automatically.
Has Archana changed from season 1 to 2.0?
No. She is the same girl, who is very simple, hardworking and loves her family.
Then the love story begins.
The way Manav and Archana fall for each other is beautiful.
Manav has always loved Archana and Archana has always been the kind of person who takes a lot of time.
I think, in that respect, you will see a slightly different version of Archana this time.
Now, she takes a stand for herself and her life.
She can speak what she feels because this is 2021, and there will be some changes in that respect.