If we don’t act, we will die even without Covid: main actors on the missing sets; can’t wait to come back
The show must continue, they say, and the TV producers have ensured that this year they continue to film and entertain audiences on the hit. So when the state government imposed restrictions on the state, there was no question of filming from April 15. Many TV series have chosen to continue filming outside of Maharashtra and have moved to Goa, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Bengaluru, Silvassa, Delhi and Gujarat.
But due to the increase in COVID-19 cases, key players have not been able to join their TV shows’ units out of work. Aanjjan Srivastav, 73, who stars in Wagle Ki Duniya (WKD), says: “I’ve been playing my whole life and now if I can’t what am I going to do? We want to act until we live. Anyone who wants to work should be allowed to work. If we don’t act, we will die even without Covid. Some actors act for the money while others play for the trade and enjoy the process. I can’t wait to get back to the sets. As soon as the government allows it or the lockdown ends, I want to work. ”
A number of actors are missing from their current TV shows, including Mann Ki Awaaz Pratigya 2’s Anupam Shyam, WKD’s Bharti Achrekar, Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai’s Swati Chitnis. Although Rajendra Chawla, 52, does not shoot for his show Tera Yaar Hoon Main, he has found a way to be seen in the episodes. He shares, “The team revised the script to show my character via video calls on the show. I shoot short videos and send them. It’s not the same as filming but I’m happy to do something. I miss my unit and talk to them daily. Previously I wouldn’t watch the show regularly but now I watch every episode, ”Chawla hopes that soon they will have some clarity on the restrictions and the creators can decide to return to Mumbai accordingly.
Most older people have received both doses and feel more comfortable venturing out to shoot. 81-year-old Arvind Vaidya is ready to join his show Anupama, in Silvassa. He said, “I felt really bad that I couldn’t go shoot. I have played for 56 years of my life and for me playing is not my bread and butter but my saans (breathing). I understand the problem and didn’t want to take any chances. I spoke to producer Rajan Shahi who gave me a break and now that I have both doses of the vaccine I hope to join them soon. Srivastav points out that during filming in Mumbai, the producers took every precaution and kept the unit in a bio-bubble and will continue to do so once they return. He adds that they’re no different from so many younger actors who have diabetes or high blood pressure.
Chitnis, 62, who contracted Covid-19 last year, says his aftermath is long lasting. She said, “I feel very bad that I can’t shoot. It’s the longest break I’ve taken on a shoot. But he wasn’t safe to travel and the doctors told me I was at risk due to age. I feel young at heart, but I can’t ignore the fact that I’m 62. I hope the shoots will open soon in Mumbai. ”