Hungama Play’s web series ‘Ratri Ke Yatri’ — a unique anthology about five dramatic and sensitive stories set in red light areas. The story is about anthology featuring 5 different dramatic, sensitive and thought-provoking stories set in red light areas. And the show will feature Shefali Jariwala who will be playing the role of a prostitute. Alongside her, we have Sharad Malhotra who is also a part of her story.
Talking about the show and her character Shefali Jariwala shared her experience with India Forums.
How was your experience in shooting for Ratri Ki Yatri 2.0.?
My experience in shooting for Ratri Ki Yatri 2.0 was brilliant. I mean, I was directed by none other than Anil V Kumar who was an institution by himself. He’s a pleasure to work with. And there is so much that you can learn from him. He’s a wonderful director to have on set. My co-star, Sharad Malhotra, is a friend… So, since we were shooting a very sensitive subject, the story revolves around a brothel. I was extremely comfortable shooting scenes because the director made me comfortable, Sharad me to be very comfortable.
How did you decide to take up this role?
When I got a call from Anil V Kumar productions for Ratri Ki Yatri 2.0, of course, I was thrilled because I already knew Ratri Ki Yatri season one was immensely successful and my husband Parag was a part of one of the stories, so I already knew what the subject was it’s about. – It’s an anthology of stories that revolves around the red light area. But when this role was offered to me, initially I was scared, mainly because playing a role of a prostitute has got a lot of layers. It’s a very complex character. And, what we are trying to show in Ratri Ki Yatri 2.0 is the underlying emotions behind the people who work in the red light areas. And we’re trying to change the perspective of the people, because whenever we think about red light areas, the only thing that comes to our mind is vulgarity, skin shows, sex.. but that is not what the story is about the stories about, the human emotions and how a visit to red light can actually change a man’s life for good, for better. And, so that’s what the story is about without revealing much. Um, I knew that it was a very complex character to play and there would be a lot of emotions involved and I didn’t know if I could do justice to it. So I took my time and tried to prepare for the role before I said yes to it. I had a long discussion with the director about what is it that I could do.. And how was it that I can portray the emotions right? Because the emotion that we’re trying to portray is not something that comes easily to people. So I wanted to prepare, I did a lot of research, since I couldn’t go out because of COVID restriction I did a lot of online research about the body language and the lives and circumstances of sex workers and how was it that they got into the business and what are their stories? Reading up in detail, it moved me to another level. I mean, I could then understand and relate with the character. And only then I felt confident that I would be able to do justice to this character. And after numerous readings and workshops with Anil sir, we were ready to shoot. I was thrilled to be on set. I was very comfortable and I could perform, and there were emotions there and there were people with tears in their eyes, and I had tears in my eyes and it is an emotion that I’ve never felt before. So as an actor, I think I feel very fortunate that I got to play a character like Dipika, uh, the character that I’m playing in one of the stories in Ratri Ki Yatri 2.0
What was the thought process while she was preparing for the role
Also getting back to shoots after almost one and a half years. I was also very nervous. I had cold feet because, you know, after so long you come back to the set and you don’t know if you’ve still got the mojo or no, but having said that it was very exciting to be back on set with the people, the energy was right. And, once we started, then it took off to another level. I’m just very happy that after this break I could be a part of such a wonderful story. My first project after the COVID break was such a beautiful project, and I’m really hoping that the audience would love and understand the emotions that we are trying to show.
Apart from Shefali, many popular actors have been roped in to be a part of the show including Ssharad Malhotra, Adaa Khan, Rashami Desai, Shakti Arora, Meera Deosthale, Monalisa.