The actress also revealed the reasons that makes this show so very relatable to everyone
Besides being blessed with good looks, Natasha Bharadwaj has also been blessed with acting skills, which explains the reason for her to have many fans all over. Testimony to his acting prowess has been her roles in shows like Amazon Prime’s web series ‘Mumbai Diaries 26/11’, India’s Next Superstars and also MX Player’s web series Pawan and Pooja. This time round, she is all set to win over your hearts and attention with her role of Meher in the ongoing web show ‘Ishq Next Door’.
OTTplay met up with Natasha Bhardwaj for an exclusive conversation in order to know more about her show and many other interesting things about her. Over to you, Natasha…
Natasha, to begin with, what was the first reaction when you heard about ‘Ishq Next Door’?
You know what… initially, the name of the show was ‘Padosan’. But eventually, it ended up being called as ‘Ishq Next Door’. The first time I heard the story, I was very intrigued. It’s a very simple and sweet story. The character that I play is called Meher and trust me when I say that Meher’s characterisation really fascinated me a lot. My first reaction after I heard about my character Meher was that, ‘I would want to watch it’.
You spoke about the show being called as ‘Padosan’ initially. Then, why the change of name?
Actually, the show’s makers wanted it to be called as ‘Ishq Next Door’. It has a ring to it.
You said that your character in the show Meher intrigued you a lot. Can you touch upon the traits of Meher?
You will find that, in the show that, everyone is in love with my character Meher. She is a very sweet, simple girl who has a lot of ambition in life. But unfortunately, she faces a lot of resistance from her family as she doesn't get any support from them. And that's something that can really come in her way. But she doesn't let it bother her in the way of her progress. She pushes herself forward all the time. In short, there is nothing that can stop her. Amidst all this, she lands up finding love and post that, how life changes for her and for the people around her is what the show is all about.
So, you play a go-getter?
Yes! An absolute go-getter! I'm not going to stop for anything in the world. And, for that, even if I have to convince my parents and they do not get convinced, I'll do it myself. That's the spirit that my character has. It’s a typical ‘colony ki kahaani’. The characters of Dev (played by Abhay Mahajan) and Meher been living in the same colony for a very long time. And, amidst all this, budding love between them happens. Around the same time, there is an ex-boyfriend of my character who comes back and how my character deals with that made it furthermore challenging. What are her emotions then and how they navigate through that, is really interesting. Additionally, here, I would also like to mention that, Dev and Meher’s ex-boyfriend are extremely contrasting personalities. My character in the show is basically figuring her way through all of that.
When you say ‘budding love’ between Meher and Dev, do you mean unspoken love?
No. It is basically courtship.
What’s your profession in the show?
I own my boutique and wants to study fashion.
What was your first reaction when you were offered the show?
My heart was smiling when I read the script. When I heard the script for the first time, I could feel its simplicity was just so simple and so pure in terms of intention. And then when I read the script, it was very, it was really nicely written in terms of dialogue in terms of scenes, which is something which is why I said yes to the project. When I read it as my character Meher and then, when I read it as a script, I wanted to watch it.
Since it’s an all-young star cast, how was the vibe on the sets? Was it serious or full dhamaal- masti?
All of us had lots of fun. Every single day was full of memories.
How is Akhilesh Vats as a director?
He is very on point. He is extremely good with his work. Be it direction or his writing. He aces it flawlessly.
Was he a taskmaster when it came to shootings?
He is a silent observer and he knows how to get things out of his actors. And that too in a very easy manner. In other words, being the captain of the ship, he really knows how to steer the ship.
What’s your take of OTT as a medium?
Streaming has changed the way we look at cinema. With this medium, one has the space and also the time to explore. Not only as an actor, but also as a producer, director, other technicians. OTT is also about how you can really get into the details of relationships, characters and nuances. It simply brings out all these aspects.
How important is social media in your life?
It’s kind of important. It keeps me in tune with the latest updates and happenings. But I am not addicted to social media.
What’s next for you?
I have ‘Mumbai Diaries’ season 2 coming out hopefully soon. The show has taken a very interesting turn. What had happened in season one, and what's happening in season two are completely different and interesting.
Before we sign off, can you cite a couple of reasons why a person should watch ‘Ishq next Door’?
In a world of hard-hitting shows, our show is an easy breezy show. There is romance and comedy. Moreover, its nicely written and directed. The icing on the cake is that, every character in the show is very relatable.