SB : How was the whole experience working on this show?
GP : I really enjoyed working in this programme, probably if it was some other show like normal Saas-Bahu, I wouldnt enjoy this much. In this show also there is a Saas-Bahu in the family, but the main track is between the husband and wife, which everyone enjoys. Their cute fights and how they get back together and, then every time again how something goes wrong and they fall apart. I think this is what keeps everybody interested in it.
I really enjoyed doing it, because Gauri is a character that is very similar to me in real life. If you want to know me in real life, then watch Kutumb, that is the way I am in real life.
SB : What would you have done in real life, if you faced the same situation that your character Gauri faces in the serial?
GP : HaHaI knew that one was coming. I dont know. My parents have always been with me in whatever I have done in life. They have never denied me anything, because they have always had faith in me. So if a situation like this had occurred in my life, I am sure they would have tested me and I wouldnt have gone this way. But, other than that angle of me marrying somebody who I hate, everything else would have been the same way.
SB : Do you think that it is possible for someone to marry the person he/she hates?
GP : Haan. Why not? It is possible, if you read the newspapers things similar to this do happen, this is just a different angle. There are a lot of other things that happen due to hate, so this is very much possible. Maybe, I wouldnt have done it in my personal life, maybe I would have, if I thought it was the best thing I was supposed to do at that particular point of time. It is just circumstantial. In Kutumb whatever the character thought was right in that particular situation was done by it.
SB : What is the reason for you doing only one serial?
GP : When you are doing a daily you have to give at least 15-20 days in a month. I am not the person who likes to work 30 days a month. I would like to give some time to myself. If I give 20 days for Kutumb, then I have just 10 days in my hand. In those 10 days I do my other advertising work and, if I get some time free I like to spend that on my own. So this is the reason why I havent taken up other serials.
SB : How did you get into the profession of acting?
GP : I was modeling earlier. I had taken part in Miss India, in the year 1998 and was one of the finalists. Back then I was staying in Pune, my family is still in Pune. After Miss India, I started getting a lot of work and, it was not possible for me to commute from Bombay to Pune all the time. Then I shifted to Pune and my family supported me in that decision. I started doing ramp after that, but walking up and down the ramp without any creativity, that wasnt my idea of a profession. I wanted to experience ramp and I worked in it for 2 years. After that I thought I had do something else and that is when acting happened.
SB : The character that you play shares the same name with you. Was the character written keeping you in mind?
GP : No, the name Gauri was given at the start and from whatever Ekta told me, they were talking about whom to cast for the role. They were thinking about this when somebody in the office told that Gauri Pradhan should play this role. That is how Ekta thought about me and, she called me and this whole thing happened.
SB : The character Gauri is supposed to be an independent woman, then why is she taking all the nonsense from her in-laws?
GP : She is not putting up with any nonsense from her in-laws, because her in-laws love her dearly. They always treated her like their own daughter. I think they love her more than their son. So, she is not putting up with any nonsense from her in-laws. But, if she is putting up with nonsense from her husband, she is always giving it back to him.
SB : But why is she getting into such a situation?
GP : Because she loves her in-laws very much and she doesnt want to hurt them. She loves her in-laws as she loves her own family, at the same time she has always given it back to Pratam, her husband. Hence, she is trying to have a balance between the in-laws and her husband. And, its never been so bad that she cant take, whenever she cant take it she decides to leave the house.
But, again something happens where her mother-in-law falls sick, or the family angle comes in picture and she cant do whatever she wants.
SB : How has the character of Gauri changed from the start of the serial up till now?
GP : If you are portraying a particular character, then there cannot be changes in it. Circumstances can change, but the character doesnt. Whatever Ekta told me about the character that she is a very strong-headed girl, does whatever she wants, is a person who takes advice, but finally she does what she feels is right, this aspect of the character has been constant. Hence there have been no changes in the character at all from the start up till now.
SB : What are your other interests?
GP : I love reading, travelling a lot and playing tennis. I used to swim before, but now I dont get time for it.
SB : Do you socialise during your free time?
GP : First of all, I hardly get any free time. Secondly, I dont socialise at all, I dont know whether it is wrong or right, but I dont socialise.
SB : Do you think, if this same serial had been done by some other production house other than Balaji Telefilms, would it still have been such a big success?
GP : When it comes to Balaji, people watch the first few episodes just because the serial comes for Balaji. But, other than that I think it is completely on the artist, director and on the show as a whole. Maybe for a few episodes in the beginning you can say that, it is a Balaji serial and it is doing well, but other than that I think that if it were any other production house it would have gone the same way. So you cant give the whole credit to Balaji.
SB : What message would you give out to your fans?
GP : My message to young fans, especially kids watch the show, is there nothing wrong with acting, since most of them are aspiring actors or actresses. You should always do whatever you want to in life, but you must complete your education. I think that is very, very important, because this is a very short-lived career and you should have something to fall back on. I just hope they understand the importance of it.