Not one to follow trends, producer Dipti Kalwani is a person who wears many hats. In her latest outing with her production house Sunny Side Up, she plans to tell interesting stories that connect with people. Here are excerpts from a chat with her…
Tell us something about your background.
Dipti Kalwani: I am from Indore, and I came to Mumbai to study. I started my career as an assistant director and worked on a lot of shows as a creative director and worked with networks like star and sony.
How did you open your production house, Sunny Side Up?
Dipti Kalwani: I wanted to tell stories my way and I realized that when you work with a channel or a production house, you are bringing to life somebody else’s vision. I wanted to do things that I visualize and not someone else. So, the best way to do that was to open a production house.
Writer, producer creative director, channel creative director you have worked across all categories. What do you enjoy doing the most?
Dipti Kalwani: What I loved the most is telling interesting stories in interesting ways. Roles don’t define me. Before this, I have done various shows, but at the end of the day, you’re doing the same job in a different capacity. Working as a producer is creatively satisfying because it is me who is executing my vision. I have been associated with making television shows for a long time and this is something that I have not done before. Sure it is a different hat for me, but I guess it’s the same in terms of work, so I don’t feel like it’s completely alien.
You have come up with a unique show Badho Bahu. What is the feedback you are getting?
Dipti Kalwani: The response has been tremendous. People love the character of Badho. I am happy that my heroine is not a typical, ‘bechari heroine’. I like the fact that she is being adored by the audience, especially since she is being herself in the patriarchal world of Haryana where women don’t really have a voice. I enjoyed creating a character who doesn’t care that she is fat, she is just so confident. She is someone who enjoys life, appreciates everybody around her and doesn’t consider herself less than anyone. She’s a spunky and strong character. I consciously wanted to create a character who was the perfect girl, not in the perfect world, yet she is perfect in her own way. And with Badho, I got what I wanted.
What is your vision for your company? Where do you see yourself five years from now?
Dipti Kalwani: I want to continue doing good shows, create quality content on television or even films; whatever comes my way. I want to sell good content, no matter what the medium is. I want to do interesting work and tell interesting stories. Five years from now, I see myself writing, creating, developing stories and producing. I want to tell stories which inspire people, and make them feel good about themselves. They should think, that if Badho can survive and be grateful and happy with what she has, then I can find things to appreciate about my own life as well. I want to tell stories that entertain and inspire people at the same time. For example, when I worked on Badho, I realized something , all my friends with no exceptions were unhappy with their bodies. Some are fair, dark, thin or fat. Women are apprehensive about their body, no matter what size they are. People have low self-esteem because they think that they are not skinny enough. We are living in a world driven by advertisements where a woman is portrayed as an object. That’s why no woman is happy with her body type. But kindness and confidence come from your heart. Size doesn’t determine what you feel about yourself. Sometimes, it’s important to focus on who you are as a person and not what size dress you can fit in. Even the thinnest people are have a complex. So you have to accept, appreciate and value yourself.