New Delhi: Himani Shivpuri, who plays Katori Amma in &TV’s Happu Ki Ultan Paltan, has been one of India’s most talented and brilliant actresses for over three decades. She has appeared in some of the biggest blockbusters of all time, and her superb acting abilities have won millions of hearts. Himani Shivpuri has a strong passion for theatre, which has brought her fame, fortune, and recognition. In a recent candid interview, the actress discusses her inspiring journey as an actress and more.
She talked about her journey in Bollywood, saying, “After completing my post-graduation in organic chemistry, I was set to leave for the United States for advanced studies. Still, at the very same time, I got selected for NSD (National School of Drama). Everyone got annoyed when I told my family I wanted to go for NSD. Initially, I had a negative impression of Bollywood. I did not want to be in movies. I believed that Bollywood was where actresses were expected to show themselves. I was content doing plays and theatre till I met my late husband, Gyan Shivpuri, who motivated me to do films. I began auditioning and feel grateful and fortunate to have worked in great classics such as Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, Pardes, and Umrao Jaan.”
Talking about her challenges, she said, “I came from a small town in Uttar Pradesh and then shifted to Dehradun. At that time, venturing into the entertainment industry was frowned upon, and no one took my career choice seriously. I was often questioned, “Kya nautanki karogi? I had to convince my family to understand that acting is a serious business and that one must be formally trained to be an actor. Hence, I decided to join the NSD, which took a lot of convincing. Thankfully, my father, Haridutt Bhatt, supported me. Still, it was not as easy as it was difficult to explain to my family that choosing acting or theatre as a profession requires certain skill sets and equally hard work.”
She finally disclosed her thoughts about giving up on her career. Himani said, “Honestly, many times after my husband’s unexpected death, I seriously considered quitting acting. I wanted to give up everything because I used to feel bad about leaving my child at home to go to shows as a mother. Because we did not have much money, we had no choice but to work.”
She continued, “I recall one event in Kolkata; we could not afford to travel, so I breastfed my child on the train. It is difficult to forget the stress and difficulty of those days, rushing to the restroom before performances to express the milk, so the costume didn’t get wet. The point is that women rarely have it easy, whether at home or work. The fact is that women, whether at home or work, rarely have it easy. But I learned to never give up and always stand up against all the odds of life.”
Himani Shivpuri is currently playing Katori Amma in &TV’s ‘Happu Ki Ultan Paltan’.