As MouliGanguly gears up for EkThhiNaayka, she speaks to Toi.com about negative energy, playing a vamp on-screen and shooting with Konkona Sen Sharma. You are pairing up with Sudha Chandran once again for Ek Thhi Naayka after the successful Kaahin Kissii Roz. How does it feel?
It is exciting
since I am very close to Sudhaji. When I said yes to this project, I
didn't know she is part of the series. When we did Kaahin Kissii Roz, I
was a rank newcomer and she taught me a lot. In the process, I became a
huge fan of hers ' a big chamchi. I would flood her with how-why-where
questions. Then she did a Bengali jatra, which took her to Kolkata.
There she met my family. Even when the show ended, we kept in touch, but
couldn't meet because of our busy schedules. This time when we met, we
started from where we had left. Even a part of the unit happens to be
the same as Kaahin... so, it is like going back 10 years in time. All of
them gang up together and pull my leg. They say, 'Dekho Mouli finally
acting karna seekh gayi'. Tell us about your role in the series.
I play a Bengali theatre actress, Tanushree, which is incidentally my
mother's name. Sumona Chakravarti too has an important role. Uma Biswas,
played by Sudha Chandran, is Tanushree's mentor. Konkona Sen Sharma
plays a cameo in it. Do you believe in daayans and ghosts?
I am very scared of certain things. If there is positive energy, then
there must be negative energy to balance it. But honestly, I had no clue
about daayans before doing this show. In Mumbai, people feel that
everybody in Kolkata is related to jadu tona. They say, 'Bengal ka jadu
tona to aata hoga tumhe'. How was it shooting with Konkona?
I admire her as an actor. It was a night act and we shot a Kali puja
sequence where she tells me about the daayan. Poor thing she came on the
sets and was immediately given a bunch of scenes. As TV actors we are
used to it, but she was not. She was very cooperative though she missed
her son, Haroon, who she had left behind at home. On the sets, Konkona,
Sumona and I kept conversing in Bengali, much to the annoyance of people
around us. What made you take up the role?
For me, Ekta's production house is like home. It is my comfort zone. It
was an opportunity for eight known faces of Indian television to come
together. I am getting to play a Bengali here, a culture I am closely
associated to. I had no reason to say no. I am glad Ekta considered me
for this role. You played a negative character for the first time in Kya Hua Tera Vaada. How have the reviews been?
Very good. However, I didn't do the show for reviews, but for myself.
TV is dominated by women, but you get very few options to play different
roles. You are mostly seen as the bechari bahu. So, when I was offered
to play a strong and confident woman, I was elated. Also, it gave me the
opportunity to experiment. I loved the fact that the character takes
the story forward. As an actor, I don't carry a baggage. I try to push
myself and do things within the given parameters. Earlier, I have played
an undercover cop and politician. Anushka has different shades. She is
not the usual submissive, helpless, regressive woman. After doing this,
the big channels got in touch with me for the first time. This is
something which the positive roles never got me. I could connect to a
different set of audience. Earlier, only homemakers would relate to me. Do you relate to Anushka ' a strong, confident woman?
Anushka is confident and I could relate to her, because everybody has
that a bit of grey shade in them. She is a one-man woman. I would have
behaved the same way if I had met my first love after 10 years. But at
present Anushka is seen as too venomous. Nobody can be like her in real
life. In fact, koi Mona type ka bhi nahi ho sakta, so sacrificing and
goody-goody. We portray black and white characters on screen because
people like it that way. Your co-star from Saaksshi, Amit Sadh, has finally found a foothold in Bollywood with Kai Po Che. Are you planning to follow sui
t? Like Amit, if I am offered a tempting role and that too on big a canvas, then yes.