'People, who think Sunny Leone comes with baggage, are all humbug. She has made people look at the porn industry with a lot of respect.'
Gautami Kapoor on husband Ram Kapoor, Sunny Leone, and her new TV show, Tere Sheher Mein.
After seven years, television actress Gautami Kapoor makes a comeback with her new TV show, Tere Sheher Mein, on Star Plus.
The actress, who has starred in hit shows such as Ghar Ek Mandir and Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi, starred in last year’s Khelti Hai Zindagi Aankh Micholi. But the show was axed in just three months due to poor ratings.
Gautami talks to Rediff.com contributor Rajul Hegde about her career, actor husband Ram Kapoor and the balancing act of home and work.
What feedback have you got for Tere Sheher Mein?
Recently when I went to a shopping mall, the sales girl said, ‘When you cry in the show, I remember my mother.’
That’s very cute and nice.
Many hopes are pinned on this show so there is a lot of pressure on us.
I have been away from television for seven years so I was unaware of the pressure. Today, everything is about ratings and TRPs.
Do you and your husband Ram Kapoor discuss work?
We used to but now we leave our work behind because when we go home the kids just take over. But yes, I do take his opinion if I have to do a certain scene.
I discuss the scene with him as he is a trained actor and there are nuances he would know and I wouldn’t because I am not a trained actor.
What is his reaction to your show?
Ram has not watched much but he is glad that I am working.
He tells me, ‘Don’t take my opinion, just follow your gut’.
This show looks different; it’s attempting something new in terms of the content.
Ram is waiting for his show Dil Ki Baatein Dil Hi Jaane (which will be launched today on Sony). He plays a simple man unlike his past roles as a rich business tycoon. I hope it works for him and his fans.
Do you nag him about his weight? It works for him on television especially.
Of course I nag him and beat him that’s why he is so fat (laughs).
I don’t nag him because you need to give him space.
Whenever he decides to, he will do it. It has to come from within to quit any of his habits.
If my daughter tells him maybe he will do it.
Lots of men in the age group of 35-45 identify with him as they have a paunch, no body shape and are busy with their careers and neglect their health.
Many of my friend’s husband’s say thank God for Bade Achhe; we can be ourselves.
How do you balance work and home?
I took a seven-year break because I knew that I couldn’t be in three different places.
I am a hands-on mother and I am actively involved with my children’s school.
There were days when I was dying to get back to work but I am glad that I took that gap.
I am lucky I had the luxury to take it. I invested that time in my children.
When I decided to get back to work, I knew that they were set. They have a routine and are disciplined.
When I was checking out the show, I was very nervous because shooting for a daily takes a lot of time.
I’ll never forget what my eight-year-old daughter said to me.
She asked why I was stressed. I said I had got work and I want to work. She said, “Mamma, if you work I am going to be really proud of you.”
I leave for shooting after they go to school so there is no guilt. But they are asleep when I get back at night.
I love my work and I am not a person who can sit at home.
How many days in a month do you work?
I work for almost 20-25 days in a month. It’s not bad because the pace is nice and we don’t have the telecast pressure.
You have not done a reality show. Would you do a dance reality show like Nach Baliye?
I would love to do a reality show like Nach Baliye if Ram had time.
He is fortunately in a phase where he does films and television and I don’t want him to dilute that.
What was your reaction to the lip-lock between Ram and Sakshi Tanwar in the television soap Bade Achhe Laggte Hain? There was such a hullabaloo about it. Did he speak to you before he did the scene?
As a wife, it shocked me a little initially. But as an actor, I didn't want to set any limitations on another actor's scenes.
Ram and Sakshi were comfortable doing it so they did it and that’s great.
I think it came out beautifully. I watched the scene after the uproar.
Yes, he had spoken to me about it before doing it. I didn’t react because I didn’t think any reaction was required of me.
I think after two children you become very secure. May be if I was younger and Ram was my boyfriend I would be very definite about it.
We have been married for 13 years and attitudes and outlook become more mature.
It was a wonderful effort, a benchmark for television to do something so bold. The credit goes to Sakshi as well because it is team work.
Sunny Leone comes with a reputation and Ram Kapoor’s next film is with her. So what’s your take on her?
I am proud of Sunny Leone. People, who think Sunny comes with baggage, are all humbug. She has made people look at the porn industry with a lot of respect; hats off to her.
I am glad Ram is working with her. People only want to see her in a bikini. But when you interact with her, you realise that she is one of the most professional, committed and down-to-earth human beings I have ever met.
She has a great heart and awesome brains. As a package, she is phenomenal.
Do your kids watch your show?
My kids watch only cartoons.
Yes, they are watching my show for the first time because of the three girls (who play her daughters) and not because of me.
I don’t know whether they will continue watching it. My daughter complains that I shout at the girls in the show (smiles).
Do you plan to act in films as well?
If I am offered a good one I can balance it out.
It’s strange that nobody has offered me a Marathi film. Marathi filmmakers probably have a misconception that I only want to do Hindi films, but that’s not true.
There are some phenomenal Marathi films currently on very good subjects.
If something is offered to me, I will do it without even thinking.