Veteran actress Neena Gupta, who worked on a TV shows like Saans, Siski, Saat Phere and Kamzor Kadii Kaun, says engaged on the small screen gave her money, fame and name. “When I came from Delhi to become an actor there have been only films and no TV. Working in films is an aspiration for all actors. When I didn't get any roles in films then I did TV and got an opportunity to play all types of roles. TV gave me money, fame and name,” Neena Gupta said.
The 59-year-old says she did a great deal of labour on the small screen. “I used to get small and useless roles in movies. Then I thought I should just do TV and these days the fan following I actually have is attributable to engaged on television,” added Neena Gupta, who is presently enjoying the success of her latest released Badhaai Ho.
Asked if age is currently prejudicious for an actress' career in film industry, Neena agreed and said that after an explicit age, they do not receive good offers. "There are not many roles. I always say that 'After a certain age, what is a woman's role? Taking care of the family and home. After that, there is no role'. When the society will change, I think we would have more roles on-screen."
Last year, Neena was within the spotlight when she took to social media to ask for "good roles". She has now been frequently seen in films. Apart from Badhaai Ho, Mulk and Veere Di Wedding this year, she's going to be seen next in Sandeep Aur Pinky Farrar.
"Earlier in these subjects, there were no big roles. We used to get small character roles. Now films are being made on solid and substantial roles," said Neena, who essays a 50-year-old pregnant woman in Badhaai Ho.
She said the film is not only about breaking taboos, but about ageless love. "It is an important thing and I don't think anyone has ever spoken about this. The more I worked in the film, the more I realised that it is very important and is more than just 'hasi, mazaak (humour)'," added Neena, who is the mother of popular designer Masaba Gupta, whom she had with legendary cricketer Vivian Richards.
She describes her own journey as a mother "very tough". "My journey was very tough. I had no money. Money is the most important thing, I have realised in this world. I didn't have a husband and relatives. So it was really tough, but the joy Masaba gave me... The joy of motherhood... She was a very good child she did not trouble me much.