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Yamini Malhotra goes to Lonavala, Pawna Lake, along with her mother, says it was the much-required vacation

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When the lockdown restrictions eased, Yamini Malhotra packed her bags for a quick vacation. The Ghum Hai Kisikey Pyaar Meiin actor, along with her mommy dearest, went to Lonavala and Pawna Lake for two days.
“I’m having good fun. Firstly, my mom has come to visit me in Mumbai. This is the first time that she has travelled in one and a half years. Ever since COVID began, last year she had not stepped out of home. Secondly, we could travel together, even if it was for a short period. More than me, I wanted her to enjoy and breathe fresh air, which is why we went for this road trip to Lonavala and Pawna Lake. The weather was amazing and the scenic beauty was to die for. Wherever we turned our heads, it was lush green and beautiful. It is a must go to the Ghats during the monsoon,” she adds.
Yamini says short breaks are important for an actor. “They are such a breather and help you relax as well. Mumbai life is tough, traffic, crowded places, etc, and shooting schedules are also very hectic. Short breaks rejuvenate your entire system,” says the actor, adding that since the pandemic restricted travel, so taking one after so many months was bliss but felt very different too.
“It’s not the same anymore. That terror of Covid remains in your subconscious. We preferred not to go to any crowded places or restaurants. Since we were on a road trip, we tried to find secluded places where there was not many people and had only scenic beauty,” she says.
A passionate traveller, Yamini loves everything about exploring and experiencing something new. “I love road trips. So many unexpected can happen on such trips, it is no less an adventure. It also feels good to see new places and new people. In India every 50 kms, the terrain, the culture, the language, the dressing style, change. So it’s fun to soak in all the different shades of our country,” adds the actor, whose favorite places are Goa and Uttarakhand in India. Her favourite international destination is Dubai.
About the travel essentials in her bag, more so now amid the pandemic, she shares, “Now sanitizers and masks are must carry. But, to tell you the truth, there are no travel essentials for me. I actually want to pack everything (laughs). My friends laugh when they see me carrying one big suitcase packed for a two-day trip. I want matching footwear and handbags with all my clothes, and then my own pillow, sheet, towel, toiletries, my Bluetooth speaker, tripod, and diet coke cans.”

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‘Rakshabandhan: Rasaal Apne Bhai Ki Dhaal’: Shivraj is angry

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Herumb Khot on what’s next for Invictus Mediaworks: We’re planning historicals, TV content, and short format, OTT and emerging media content as well

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From being a computer engineer, fashion photographer to a director-producer Herumb Khot has come a long way. Coming from a typical Maharashtrian family, engineering was a logical eventuality, but while pursuing his education he realised he is more interested in the world of fashion and photography.

“I am a self-taught photographer and started my career in Advertising and Fashion Photography when digital photography was gaining popularity. Photography is the reason why I started my own creative agency. Through it all, I knew that the internet was the way forward for entertainment and in 2006 came up with Nautanki.tv with two others.

We were in the 10 best business ideas in India that year as per leading business magazines. It was a bad partnership, so I walked out and started Sutra.tv. In Sutra, we made multilingual content that received appreciation. These two experiences gave me a new direction and I ended up getting into direction and production of Marathi films. Post that I also dabbled into AD films, Corporate films,” he says, before talking about his association with producer and storyteller Nilanjana Purkayasstha.

Together they decided to get into TV content together with Invictus Mediaworks. Their latest show is Chikoo ki Mummy Durr Ki.

“When I met Nilanjana, we would often discuss content and the potential TV has a medium. So that’s how slowly our collaboration worked out. Another passion of mine is history. I’m a history buff and I am a visiting faculty for a PG program in leadership, politics and governance. I also give a lot of talks in various forums and lit fests about the true history and mainly what we can learn through history.

This knowledge of history was a natural progression to the historicals we made for TV. So everything I ever did has led me to the current place that I am today,” he adds.
Herumb then became a director by accident.

“My friend Rahul Thackeray and I loved a story that we wanted to produce as a comedy film and along the way we realised that we couldn’t find people to translate what we wanted to create. So, we wrote and directed it together. It was a serious political thriller which we made into a crazy campus comedy that was way ahead of its time. After that I wrote and directed the thriller Game Over,” he says.

Talking about their future plans, Herumb adds, “There are loads that we are working on. We are planning historicals, more TV content, short format content, OTT and emerging media content as well. On a personal front, I am working on my pet project, ‘History Trippin’ that delves into the true history of our great nation and what the next generation can learn and also get to know about our spiritual heritage.”

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Producer Sudhir Sharma: There are only few takers for progressive and realistic content. We must stop chasing the last hit, audiences are ready for new stories.

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Having done shows like Miley Jab Hum Tum, 12/24 Karol Bagh, Na Bole Tum Na Maine Kuch Kaha, The Buddy Project etc over the years, Sudhir Sharma has come a long way. He has seen the industry evolve. Meanwhile, his latest production Ziddi Dil Maane Na is doing well.

“People are scared of taking risks and just want to follow the last hit format. It’s quite evident from the viewing pattern on TV and in the growing numbers on OTT platforms that our audiences are looking for more variety and different storytelling” he adds. While many think that the content on television has evolved considerably, he feels otherwise.

“I don’t agree with this. Many shows are similar to what it used to be 10 years back. We are still making almost similar stuff. And the saas-bahu era isn’t over. It seems there are only few takers for progressive and realistic content,” he says, adding that it’s time that we become realistic, explore the unexplored and experiment as the audience is ready.

Talking more about the changes he thinks should be incorporated in daily soaps, he shares, “We must narrate different stories. At least we must try! Engaging stories of hope and happiness, stories of real drama in our lives should be touched upon.”

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