After a hiatus of three years, Rajshree Thakur aka Saloni of Saath Phere is back with Maharana Pratap which replaces Sony’s Kya Hua Tera Vaada. She tells Sangeeta Yadav that her wait to get a prominent role is now over with Jeevantha Bai, Pratap’s mother. Excerpts
- Tell us about your role in Maharana Pratap?
I’m playing Jeevantha Bai, Maharana Pratap’s mother and Maharaj Uday’s first wife. Bai played a great role in shaping the life of Maharana. The show is all about a bond that a mother and son share. It is also about how Bai lives with 19 other women (her husband had married them all) without cribbing or blaming her destiny.
- Why did you agree to do the show?
Jeevantha Bai’s role is very strong and a positive one. She was a dignified lady who never uttered a word against her husband. While Uday Singh was busy fighting a war, it was Bai who brought up and nurtured Maharana Pratap.
After Saat Phere, I had decided that I will take up shows in which I get to play the lead role. I have always been fascinated by the history of India and the lives of the rajas and maharajas. So when this opportunity presented itself, I just couldn’t refuse.
- It’s been three long years. What have you been up to?
I got married during the shooting of Saat Phere and was not able to devote a lot of time towards my family. I made full use of this break to settle down things at my home front.
- Is there any noticeable change that you see on small screen nowadays?
There is this positive trend of mythological stories. Even reality shows have picked up. There is a show for everyone. I love watching DevonKe Dev… Mahadev.
- Does it take a lot of time for you to get into the costume?
Earlier it used to take us more than an hour just to get ready and apply make up. But now I am done in less than 15 minutes flat. I am enjoying getting dressed like a Maharani of the 1550s.
- Who is your inspiration?
My father. He was very focused and ambitious. I also derive a lot of inspiration from Nutanji and Smita Patil.
- Any plans of entering Bollywood?
I don’t want to do films just for the heck of it. If I get a chance to act, I would prefer to do what Vidya Balan is doing.
Blame it on low TRPs
There is a buzz that Kya Hua Tera Vaada (KHTV) has been pulled off air due to a low TRP rating of 0.7 (May-13, 2013 to May 19, 2013). In a desperate attempt to garner viewership, KHTV and Bade Achhe Lagte Hain (BALH) had a crossover episode on December 4 and 5, 2012. The suspense of Ram’s death from BALH took a U turn with Pradeep’s demise instead. Post the death of Pradeep, the show again took a big leap of 10 years on December 10, 2012. New faces were launched but after a few months of a decent TRP run, the points came tumbling down again.
The show ended on a positive note which was telecast on May 23, 2013. Mona Singh who made a comeback in this show after six years post Jassi Jaisi Koi Nahin, in an official statement, said: “It was an enriching experience working with the team of KHTV. Last day of shoot was an emotional moment for me. We celebrated by cutting a cake on the set.”
(The article was published in The Pioneer Newspaper – http://www.dailypioneer.com/sunday-edition/sunday-pioneer/small-screen/no-films-for-the-heck-of-it.html).