WHY POOJA BANERJEE WANTED TO BE PART OF AN ICONIC DRAMA SERIES
by ASJAD NAZIR
GETTING a high from playing diverse characters, becoming different people and being able to think from a new perspective each time are the main reasons why Pooja Banerjee became an actress.
In the past decade, she has shown off her impressive range as a performer with diverse roles on television and the web space. She is currently starring in massively popular drama serial Kumkum Bhagya, which has featured an incredible number of big-named stars across the years.
Eastern Eye caught up with Pooja Banerjee to discuss her career and the experience of joining an iconic show.
Which of your roles has given you the greatest joy?
Rewa Mathur from Swim Team and Bani Mehra in Kehne Ko Humsafar Hain. Doing Swim Team was like doing something I love immensely. And with Kehne Ko Humsafar Hain I challenged myself as an actor.
What’s your experience of joining an established show like Kumkum Bhagya been like?
The show already has massive popularity and is for the masses. I have done shows that connected with the youth and was majorly for the classes, but I think this is my first show that has a connection with the
masses. And even Kasautii Zindagii Kay for that matter, but it had more of an urban reach. But Kumkum on the other hand is for the masses and it reaches pan-India. It has also increased my popularity on an individual level. What’s more, working with a great team makes it a win-win situation for me. Also, my screen presence has become more magnificent as compared to my previous shows.
Why do you think the show is so loved?
Because it has a fabulous team! Right from having lunch together to doing things on set, it is all so unified. Even today I was fasting, the entire set were like ‘where is Pooja?’ They don’t have food until they share it with one another. If I am not there or any person is missing, they will go to the other person’s room and call them. It is a fabulous team, and even after so many years, their oneness is still there. It could have faded away over time, but it is still intact (touch wood).
What is the biggest challenge you have faced with this new character?
Her mood swings! It is very difficult because it is not easy to switch from one person to the other. And portraying anger is also a challenge. I have done shows where I was supposed to get angry very frequently but doing it on a daily show and keeping the anger quotient the same requires a hell lot of energy! And only with a calm mind, can you play this character.
How has the experience of working during lockdown been?
Very weird actually. You can’t touch others, have food with them or hug them. I think during the beginning of Kasautii and Kumkum where everything was opening slowly, the feeling of being with each other was missing.
What kind of content do you enjoy watching as an audience?
I love watching biographies and dramas. But drama which has actually happened. I have enjoyed The Crown, which just transports me to some other parallel world where it had actually happened. I just feel that I am a part of that era. Also, Harshad Mehta’s Scam 1992 is a fantastic story! Anything which has happened in real and then you make it in a show, web-series or a film, really excites me a lot.
What would be your dream role?
I think the day I do it, I’ll stop working only. I’ll put it this way, with every character I play, I will keep on moving from one person to the other. But I want to play a cop or an officer.
If you could master something new what would it be?
I think YouTubing.
What inspires you?
The experiences I have each day inspire me a lot. I think they make me a different person and enable me to perform better. Any good or bad day inspires me to do better. There are some days when I get demotivated as well. But my everyday day-to-day experiences, no matter good or bad, make you a different person. I think each day is an experience. The people around me really help me think deeply or have a changed perspective, which is very important. I think experiences make you a different person altogether and that is inspiring for me.