Z Irani captured a million hearts and instantly
shot to fame with her character Tulsi Virani
in Kyunkii Saas Bhi Kabhii Bahu Thi.
She became an iconic daughter-in-law to
all the mothers-in-law of the world. But
after having played Tulsi for seven
years Smriti shocked the nation with her
decision to quit the serial that changed
television history. The actress ventured
into the field of production and her serials
Virrudh and Mere Apne soon
had viewers engrossed. She is now doing
her first cameo in Teen Bahuraniyaan.
For Smriti who came to Mumbai from Delhi
there is no looking back.
We chatted up with Smriti to find out what
the view from the top is likeÖ..
Teen Bahuraniyaan is the
first show outside your production house
that you are doing after quitting Kyunkii...
What made you choose this role?
I had an interaction with the channel
and the production house and I quite liked
what they had to offer me in terms of my
role and the script. I also wanted to break
this myth that I donít work for other production
houses. I have done a plethora of roles,
be it comedy or mythological role in Ramayan,
from KyunkiiÖ to Mere Apne. It only
interests me if I get to do different roles
and experimental work. So I wanted to break
this myth with Teen Bahuraniyaan.
Itís basically a good exercise as an actor
to step out and work in an environment which
is alien and new.
How is your character going to progress?
For that I think you should find out
from Zee and the production house.
How many episodes will you be doing?
Again, I think I am not the right person
to answer this question. Itís better left
to the production house and the channel
As far as the showís TRP is concerned,
itís not doing very good with 2.5. So is
your entry meant to garner more TRPs.?
See as far as I know Zee is ruling the
TRP chart and I canít comment on my entry
to garner more TRPs. I just would like to
say that I took this offer to break the
myth and to do something different from
what I have already done. I am in that position
of my career where TRPs doesnít actually
How different is it to work as an actor
for other production houses rather than
doing it for your own serial?
Being a producer you are always at an
actorís mercy, so I would say working as
an actor for other production house is a
So are you open to more such cameo roles?
I would love to take on such offers
but that entirely depends on the role I
am offered, the project and the channel.
Your new show Mere Apne has also
been well- received by audiences. How is
your production house shaping up?
It feels very nice when people like
your work. I always try to do different
kind of work. As far as the progress of
my production house is concerned there are
five shows in the pipeline. I am doing a
serial for Zee and some shows for Sahara
but I make it a point to speak about them
only when the time is right. I talk about
my shows only when they are coming up and
never before that.
Any film offers?
I was offered a cameo in a film from
somebody very respected and they were very
keen on me working with them. But I want
to produce a film which has my own story.
Your look is almost the same in all
your serials. You are doing different work
then why not different looks?
Recently I read this interesting comment
on why I am wearing an ulta pallu ki sari.
Now if you go to U.P and other northern
villages then you would see women wearing
saris in the same way especially women coming
from a traditional background. So, I was
quite amused when this question was asked.
But in Virrudh I am playing a cosmopolitan
girl and I am wearing a salwar-kameez.
You are called the most influential
actor on television. Comment
Is it? I am not somebody who comes from
a film background. Neither am I from a rich
and influential family. However, TV has
given me an opportunity to reach this far
that too in such a short span. I kind of
feel very honoured to reach the position
that I have. But I donít take it for granted.
I am always keen on ensuring that I keep
working and do not get stuck in one place.
I can easily say that ok fine I am the reigning
actress. But I opted for production and
took it as a challenge. Thanks to the channels
and Virrudh which is getting acknowledged
not only by viewers but also by critics
and the industry. I am getting awards and
now my other serial Mere Apne is also doing
very well. I have given two-three different
kind of serials in the past one and a half
year of being a producer. From Thodi
Si Zameen.. to Virrudh to Mere Apne
none of my work has been repetitive. There
is not much of rona-dhona in my serials.
Who do you credit your success to?
Zubin and nobody else. Itís very difficult
after 24 hours of day work, to work on five
things at one time. Apart from my career
in television, I have a career in politics
and itís very difficult to juggle everything.
I am lucky to have managed that especially
because I have a family that supports me.
Now in my production team I have a bunch
of youngsters who take on the responsibility
and ensure that I am not burdened too much.
How do you handle the combined pressure
of production and acting?
I think I have been very lucky that
channels have been very understanding, supportive.
They have been very considering and interactive
which is very helpful in creating a healthy
environment. Normally the production and
channels are at loggerheads in the industry.
But Sony and 9X came as a blessing to me
and now I am working with other channels
too. For me a channel and a production house
is on the same plane and we both work together
to ensure that we give quality serials.
How is your political career progressing?
I am the vice-president of the youth
wing of BJP, Maharashtra. Itís my third
term as national executive and six months
back I was promoted as secretary of Maharashtra
BJP unit. My career in politics has also
seen a steady climb. I am quite grateful
and excited that both the fields have seen
equal amount of promotion, climb and success.
on 11 Dec 2007 3:30 pm