Television

'Unless I get a meaningful role, I won't take it up' : Kavita Kapoor

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Indian television has not been able to boast of many gorgeous women. And when the few that are, disappear from the small screen, it invites curiosity. Kavita Kapoor is one such. She appeared with a comet like ferocity on the television horizon, making heads turn in Saans and Just Mohabbat and then vanished in a similar haze.



The young actor has done just a few select serials. Yet her performance in each has left a mark. For someone not trained to act, Kavita's confidence levels, both in her performances and in real life are amazing. She comes across just as intelligent and discerning as she is good looking. Excerpts from an interview with indiantelevision.com correspondent Amar.




After being all over the small screen just a year ago, you seem to have suddenly disappeared. Where have you been?

(laughs) I haven't disappeared. It's just that I have always been very selective. The serials that I had been doing have wound up and the newer ones will take time to come on air. But I'm doing Justujoo. At the moment, it's a small role but will become more prominent as the story progresses.

I don't feel incomplete as an actor because I don't follow the method school of acting.



Okay, lets go back in time. When did the idea of being an actor first come to your mind?

I guess it's always been there. Even as a child, I passionately wanted to be an actor. I wanted to learn acting at the NSD. However, we are a conservative family and my parents were absolutely against the idea. I took up law in college, as a new five-year course had just been introduced and it fascinated me. However, what is destined to happen, does happen. So after completing my studies, I came to Mumbai and acting happened.



Have you trained yourself as an actor?

No, I haven't. I've just performed in plays at school and college.



Is there any area where you feel training would have helped?

Perhaps it would help my diction. See, much of Amitabh Bachchan's or Shekhar Suman's success can be attributed to their command over the language. Unfortunately, in the atmosphere in which we have been brought up, we don't speak Hindi the way it should be spoken. Training could have helped improve my diction.



Are you a method actor or do you go by your instincts?

I go purely by instinct. I apply my mind to how a character would behave in a given situation and try to lose myself in that character. There was an occasion in Saans where I had to enact a scene portraying a violent rage. Now, I got carried away by the character to such an extent that I had to be cautioned lest I smash things. I have always trusted my instincts.



Do you feel there is no need for anything like method acting?

I wouldn't make a sweeping statement like that. But I am very clear that I don't feel incomplete as an actor because I don't follow the method school of acting. Tomorrow if I feel there is a need to learn method acting, I might even take it up.



Many untrained actors tend to overdo things or simply overact. Did you face this problem?

No. On the other hand, I have had people asking me if I deliberately underplay. People don't realize that 95 per cent of the times, they are acting in real life too. Even a simple act of concealing something about yourself is acting. People tend to overact when they are consciously thinking that they have to act. But I was always very clear about my style of acting. I never took to the loud and overplayed style.



What factors do you take into consideration before taking up a role?

Primarily, it's the role, followed by the story and the production set-up; in that order.

It's not easy to be so selective given the dearth of quality stuff and the economics of the medium.



Doesn't acting in TV serials get monotonous and clichéd beyond a point?



No, not for me. The reason for that is I have not taken on similar roles. That is also the reason why people remember my characters. In fact, I refuse twice as many roles as I accept. See, the purpose of acting should not be to be just seen. Unless I get a meaningful role, I won't take it up. And when I say that, let me also add here that it's not easy to be so selective given the dearth of quality stuff and the economics of the medium.



How do you keep yourself charged? Do you follow a regimen?



I thoroughly enjoy my work and that is what keeps me charged all the time. I give a lot of thinking to any character I play, watch my own performances so that I may work and improve on them. Beyond that, the only regimen I follow a fitness schedule that keeps me in shape.



On a scale of 10, how would you rate yourself as an actor?

4.5.



Aren't you being modest? Which areas do you feel you need to improve?



No I'm not being modest. I feel I need to be more uninhibited in my body language; my dialogue delivery in different roles needs to be more distinctive and my diction needs to improve.



Who are your favourite actors?

Balraj Sahani, Guru Dutt and Sanjeev Kumar.



Have your picked any stylistic elements from them?

None. I have been very careful to project myself as an absolute original. In fact, very early in my career, I've had people emulating my style - the way my hair is done, the way I speak etc.



Are you satisfied with what you have achieved in your career on TV so far?



No. In fact, I am eagerly looking forward to doing real challenging roles that haven't come to me so far.



Why haven't they? Do you feel your unconventional good looks make people undermine the actor in you?

I don't know. Agreed I look westernized which rules me out for certain roles but then unconventional looks are thriving today. Doesn't Aishwarya Rai have unconventional looks? Besides, I've never really depended so much on my looks. In fact, I've had the writers of Saans tell me that only I could have brought out the character so well.



Which has been the happiest moment of your career?

That was in 1996 when after a hugely successful ad campaign for Ericsson, my parents told me they were proud of me and reassured me that I was on the right track.



What does the future hold for you?

At the moment, I'm not thinking of anything apart from acting. For the next few years, it's going to be acting and more acting. I just hope I get the kind of roles I've wanted to do.

 

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