“It is difficult to get a break in films if you are not from a film family” – Harshita Gaur

Anish Mohanty

Harshita Gaur shot to fame with her debut TV show ‘Sadda Haq’ which ran for two and a half years. After the show got over, she took a break following which she dived into the digital space with shows like ‘Mirzapur’, ‘Sacred Games 2’ and ‘Puncch Beat’. The first episode of her new show ‘Happily Ever After’ dropped recently on Zoom Studios’ YouTube channel. In this interview, she talks about the show, memories of working on ‘Sadda Haq’, why web is an interesting space to work in, working with Vikas Gupta on ‘Puncch Beat’, ‘Mirzapur 2’ and more.

You made your acting debut with the TV show ‘Sadda Haq’. Now, you are exploring the digital space in a big way with shows like ‘Sacred Games 2’, Mirzapur’, ‘Puncch Beat’ and now, ‘Happily Ever After’.

This is a very good time for actors because of the digital medium growing in a big way. Web gives you more room for performance and lends more creative freedom to every person working on a project. Films are a fairly restricted and risky medium. In today’s world, everybody has a phone and they are consuming content on the go. That is the reason why so much content is being made. There are some cons too. If people do not like the content, they will skip it quickly and watch something else.

Working on a TV show can be quite hectic. Is shooting for a web show easier?

Most kind of shoots are hectic as we work for long hours. But, with web shows what happens is that you get breaks in between as they are finite in nature and once a show gets over, you can take a break before you start working on the next project. I shot for ‘Sadda Haq’ for two and a half years and we hardly got breaks in between.

Your last show ‘Puncchbeat’ became quite popular. How was the experience of working on it?

Working on the show was quite fun. It was the youngest team I ever worked with. Everybody was in the age-group of 19-22 years. Working with Vikas (Gupta, producer) was very good. He was a very efficient producer who made sure things fall into place perfectly.

Samyukta from ‘Sadda Haq’ remains one of the most popular characters from television in the recent times. What is that one thing about Samyukta that has stayed with you?

I grew tremendously as a person while doing the show. Fans used to come to the sets and tell me how much the show has inspired them. Samyukta was not a very skilled person but she was very hard-working. She used to believe that if you do not give up and keep working hard, you will definitely achieve your dreams. That was one thing I learnt from her.

Samyukta was an engineering student. You have also studied engineering at Amity University, Noida. Was it easy to relate to her because of that?

Well, I was in a stream where there were a lot of girls. But yes, I could relate to Samyukta as I had friends in the mechanical engineering stream and they used to feel out of place there as it largely consisted of boys.

You spoke about suffering from depression after ‘Sadda Haq’ ended as you were not getting the kind of offers you think you deserved.

A lot of people go through that but in my case was very severe. I came to Mumbai from Delhi here with a show in my hand. I was getting a lot of offers but it was not what I wanted to know. I was misquoted in that article and there were a few false things written like I visited a therapist. I did a workshop with Atul Mongia and that helped me calm myself.

Tell us something about your character in the show.

I play Avni in the show. She is a civil engineer. She is someone who is very outgoing, straight-forward, and blunt. She does not like to keep things in her heart. She wants to have a lavish wedding.

Your fans are very active on social media.

I think I am blessed to have fans who love me so much. I am not very active on social media as I have never enjoyed being on such platforms. My fans have kept me alive on social media.

Do you want to do TV again?

I am open to doing a finite show on television. Working on ‘Sadda Haq’ was a very hectic process and I do not have the guts to do another show which goes on for years.

You played one of the leads in the digital film ‘Kanpuriye’ which premiered on Hotstar. Are you interested in a full-fledged theatrical feature film?

Who does not want to do films? It is difficult to get a break in films if you are not from a film family. I am not complaining about it but it remains a fact. If I am offered an interesting film, I would love to do it.

‘Mirzapur 2’ is about to stream soon. What else do you have in the pipeline?

We will start shooting for the third season of ‘Mirzapur’ in 2-3 months. Apart from that, I am in talks for a couple of other projects.

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