Four More Shots Please! is a show related to four female friends deal with romance, work-life conflicts, ambitions and anxieties. Gurbani Judge, popularly known as Bani J and Maanvi Gagroo answers few of our questions related to their upcoming show. The show has an amazing story with real life problems which females could easily relate to.
Q. Tell us about your role in the series, Four More Shots Please.
Maanvi: Bani plays a girl from Ludhiana called Umang Singh. She has moved to Bombay to find a better life for herself and she’s currently working as a trainer in a gym. Obviously to be a trainer, you’ve to be passionate about that and she is that person. She’s also finding herself through her sexuality. She’s bisexual and there’s a reason why she has moved to this city leaving everything behind. Then she finds a unlikely friendship with this three girls and that’s it. As a character, her emotionality is very raw. She loves fully, hates fully, she gives her 100% at everything that she does.
Bani: She plays a character called Siddhi Patel. She’s one of my favorite character on the show. When I read her story, I wanted to keep reading it to find out what happens. So Siddhi has an extremely complicated relationship with her mother which I’m sure many Indian women, especially young girls will relate with because her mother looks at her in a way that she just have to groom her in a certain way and just get her married. The main goal in her life is to get her daughter married. No matter what Siddhi does, she’s never good enough and never lives up to her mother’s expectations. No matter how much she tries. Her father on the other hand is much more understanding. So the relationship of her mother and father is very dynamic and lovely watch as it unfolds. Whether she lives up to their expectations or what’s the ending or beginning or even the middle of their lives will be discovered as you watch the show. That is her relationship at her home, as soon as she steps out of the office and meets these other girls who are so different from her in obvious ways. One, they’re not virgins and secondly, they’re living their lives without their mothers dictating to them what they should be doing. She loves them, she can’t understand certain things about them but it comes from a very innocent place. She wants to know but then she’s confused do I really want to know. So there’s a lot of internal questions. As she goes back home, she always hears you’re not good for this or that. So she has a long journey of self discovery which the girls are the part of as well. It’s fun to watch her character blossom.
Q. How was it enacting the bold scenes for the show?
Maanvi: Even when I got to know about this for the first time, I was like it’s very bold and intimate. And for me personally, I’ve never done that in my career. But when we started doing it, it was just like any other scene. Also the credit for it goes to the crew, they were so comfortable, we didn’t have to worry about that, we just had to focus on the screen and then it’s mechanical. But I was stressed a lot initially.
Bani: Kirti’s intense scenes were shot before all of us. Obviously we were not the part of those scenes. So we were asking her how was it and all, give us notes or something. So one by one all of us had our scenes and I remember Maanvi being extremely nervous. Because you have a lot of hesitation because you’ve not done something before, you don’t know anything. But she was fine after that. There was an initial fear but then it was gone.
Maanvi: Then it’s no big deal. It took one or two takes. But nothing like we are retaking the shot because of something.
Bani: they’re not doing it when it’s not a point. They’re doing it just as much as they need. So there was a very fine balance. And it was shot according to everybody’s comfort level. So if you’re not so comfortable the shot is extremely close. They asked us about it. So many meetings were taken regarding it. Everybody had different boundaries and comfort level. And they were very accepting and didn’t question any of our boundaries or anything. They worked with it and with us very well. They don’t pressurized us. And you understand your character story as you’re shooting so you understand the relationship they have with the other person with whom you’re going to be seen with.
Q. The trailer of the show was compared to Veere Di Wedding. Have you guys taken any reference from that?
Bani: I don’t think the character is compared. As the show hasn’t still come out so the word comparison is wrong to be used.
Maanvi: Actually we had already finished the show, when Veere Di Wedding came out so I was shocked on what is happening. Some people did say it looks similar and some said it looks different. I came back after watching the film and texted them that it’s very different.
Q. Any BTS you’d like to share?
Bani: In one of the first kissing scene of Maanvi and a actor, I was sitting besides the monitor. It was a very sweet scene. I was standing there to give a feedback to Maanvi later. Because it very different when they give you directions and we are now friends so we know exactly where you have to work on. So I took a video and showed her and told her you can do way better than this.
Maanvi: There were many such sweet bonding moments. Specially between me and Bani. Sometimes it happens, that when you’re playing a certain part, your relationship with the other person automatically becomes similar in real life as well. So Umang is very protective of Siddhi and in real life also Bani became very protective of me while we were shooting especially. Off set she was very sweet. So there were many fun moments.
Bani: But we never had any cat fights because we don’t consider ourselves as cats. There was no such moment where I got extremely angry on someone.
Q. What was your first thought when you heard of the title, Four More Shots Please?
Maanvi: These four girls meet at a truck park which is a hangout place. And whenever they meet, either they celebrate something or discuss about a certain problem. That’s their everyday meeting point. And its like before the evening can start, four more shots please. Even at the end of the evening, four more shots please so it’s like a never ending thing for them.
Bani: the first thing that came into my mind was everyone is drunk and still talking politely. That’s how I thought of it. I thought its very sweet.
Q. Bani you’ve done Bigg boss, TV show and Roadies, which one was your favorite?
Bani: Bigg boss and Roadies had a big 10 year gap between them. I do reality shows very few because they’re extremely tiring. It sucks everything out of you. It’s nothing I can compare to, its 107 days of complete intense, you’re surrounded by people and they don’t get you, it’s just difficult. I didn’t want to work for a year after that. I said no to so many shows. I needed to find who I was all over again. I didn’t hurry at all, I took my time. I wanted a project to be creative and use my energy in a very positive way and not suck me dry. I couldn’t have been happier, I’m so glad I took this project. It came to me at the right time and I was at a good place. So I was extremely happy and felt very ready for it. And you’ve to be in the zone in order to take any kind of project. I’m not the kind of person who keeps working for no reason.
Maanvi: Bani didn’t choose the project, the project chose her.
Q. You have worked in TV, movies and web series. Do you feel digital platform has changed the dynamics of entertainment?
Maanvi: I started with TV, a Disney show called Dhoom machao Dhoom. And then movies and then digital. For me, I was getting TV offers but I didn’t wanted to do that for various reasons. I only do projects which I, myself would want to watch it. We don’t watch TV so if I won’t be able to see my own work then what’s the point? And you get a lot of money but you don’t get the time to enjoy that money. So for me personally, web has been a blessing. Pitchers has changed the game for me. For films, I only used to get Punjabi bubbly girl of similar kind. So I had stopped going for auditions, I used to decline all of them.
Bani: Even I got few TV offers of negative characters and the director told me while auditions that this is your sister who hates you or this is your father whom you hate. I was wondering what kind of family is this. It was bad. And I was just 18, this was offered to me after Roadies. I only went for the audition to see what actually all this serials are. I loved that they approached for me, it was a good day. I enjoyed.
Q. Any Ekta Kapoor shows like Naagin were offered to you?
Bani: I was offered one very famous show but I don’t want to mention it as I didn’t do it. It’s not nice to talk about a project which you haven’t done. I have few pending also. I don’t want to do it but I’m excited to audition for it and do the look test, that’s fun.
Maanvi: I got a call once for TV show related to Andha Yug where Draupati takes to task every character and there’s a whole trial after Mahabharat. They wanted me for Draupati, I got all excited. I thought it’s a bit a mythological. But then they said its a contemporary adaptation and I said wow perfect. I asked them for the script and they called me for a look test the other day. The script had similar dialogues and not contemporary. And when I went there it was all looking mythological. And I told them I have to make a call and I ran away from there.
Q. What’s next?
Maanvi: Made in Heaven and Tripling season 2.
Bani: I’m starting a shoot in March, it’s fiction. But can’t talk about it now.
Q. The energy which Ranveer Singh carries is similar to your energy. What do you feel about this Bani?
Bani: I sometimes observe that we have similar type of clothes on. I’m the female version of Ranveer Singh. I’ve a lot of respect for him and his wife. But thank you.
Maanvi: This is because she’s very discipline. If her food doesn’t arrive on time, all her energy vanishes away.
BY: RUJUTA THETE