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Exclusive! Jitin Gulati: The best part about having a cast like in Salt City are the conversations in between shots

Jitin Gulati plays one of the most important characters in Sony LIV's latest release, Salt City. 

  • Shaheen Irani

Last Updated: 04.01 PM, Jun 16, 2022

Exclusive! Jitin Gulati: The best part about having a cast like in Salt City are the conversations in between shots
Jitin Gulati (Instagram).

Currently seen in Salt City, Jitin Gulati feels the best part about the actors on the show come with the conversations. While talking to OTTplay in a candid chat, Jitin spoke about his recently released show, what Mumbai means to him and more. The actor also spoke about what working with the varied range of actors on the Sony LIV-backed show means.

Excerpts from the interview…

How would you describe Salt City in your words?

That's a tough one. Through Salt City, I get to observe people and families with the backdrop of Mumbai City. The city is very close to many people. This is the multi-pot of India. People from different villages and cities come here to make something of their lives. At the same time, it changes them irrevocably. It has a way of rusting them and helping them evolve. This show is all about that - the rust that human beings accumulate over the years in the city and how they evolve. We are talking about a family here.

Has the rusting and evolving happened to you in real life with Mumbai?

Oh yes. I had come to the city 14 years back. If I look at myself back then, in a good way, I can see a huge amount of evolvement that has happened. It's a good thing. If you don't do that in one of the prime cities of India, Mumbai, you'll be left behind. In a way, you are improving, moving, sometimes stopping, sometimes falling down but eventually, the city helps you to become what you want to become here. The city is a great force. The sea, water, salt in it - are all great forces to help accomplish your dreams. Mumbai has a large part to play in my life.

Which stage would you say you are in right now? You want to keep moving or take a break or something else?

I am hoping that I'm in a place where I'm just about to break out. There's no time to rest, sit back and think. I came with a lot of dreams in the city. Right now, I'm in a place where I can show people what I am. Hopefully, yes, I'm in a very active space right now.

What was it about the series that attracted you as an actor?

I'm playing the son-in-law of the family. I'm married to Eisha Chopra's character. I'm an investment banker. I'm also a part of the whole story - how I'm impacting the family and its decisions. I really wanted to understand human behaviour - why they do what they do. This character has really helped me understand the particular behaviour - about how I am on the show.

This is a show that is a good combo of actors and stars. While you have a Piyush Mishra, you also have a Gauahar Khan and of course, you. So, what was it like, working with them?

Having been in the industry for some time, the best part about a cast like this is the conversation we have while waiting for our shot. The conversations I had with Piyush ji, Diveyndu and the whole cast. It's a pleasure to know their journey, how they see acting and how they get the work done. We get to see how the other character is interpreting the role and what are the other elements that they add - what are they bringing from their own side - what are they seeing that makes it special. Some of them are very thorough with their script, some are very spontaneous, some do something in the scene and leave you awestruck. It's a very good mix of experienced, veteran and new actors. All of them are just brilliant. I've had a great time. That's a high point for me on the show - the bunch of actors that I've worked with.

When you are left awestruck by an actor, how do you get at par with them in such scenes?

You have to up your game. Every time you are working with good actors, it doesn't come from the space of insecurity but inspiration. When you see good actors working with you, you are always inspired to do better. In that way, insecurity is also good because you know you would give your 200% now. You also have to push yourself a lot. I have a lot of scenes with Eisha and she's a very instinctive actor. She's really in the moment. While she prepares the script and is in the character, she's still very in-the-moment. With her, it's very important for me to be present in the scene because anything can happen and it can go anywhere.

Then of course Divyendu, his timing is one of the best. His timing, beats and rhythm of scene is very apt. Piyush ji, of course, what he brings to emotional and dramatic scenes, it becomes so real in the moment that you don't have to act. There are scenes where in the high point of the series, he has really taken them to a point where you genuinely just have to be there and not act at all. There are different actors with different approaches and we were all there to match their space.

This series has a lot of actors and it is about a family that is dysfunctional. They want to talk but there's no one to listen so there is chaos. You would also be a part of these moments. What was shooting that like?

A large part of your drama comes in the silences and how the actors are in that particular moment. Once you see the show, you would know. I had a great time. I love the script. We have very alive and vibrant characters to work with. They are people you see in everyday life.

While you say it is the story of a dysfunctional family, to some extent, every family is dysfunctional. If you are putting human beings together - of different conditioning and nature - there will be chaos. It's an interesting watch. Any family drama is an interesting watch because you can relate to it so much. It's the same. I took so much from my own life and journey. At the same time, I had to learn a lot about my character because the things he does, it's not something that would come naturally to me. For me, it was a huge learning.

Your upcoming projects?

I have finished shooting for a show called Bambai Meri Jaan for Amazon Prime. I'll be shooting for two shots - for Hotstar and Netflix. These shows will release after June.