South siren Radhika Apte has her hands full with two popular films, Barun Sobti is making his much talked about debut with Main Aur Mr Riight and Tennis ace Sania Mirza is wooing TV audiences. Sangeeta Yadav tells you who is making the right noise and how!
The experimenting sorts
Radhika Apte, who was last seen in Shor in the City opposite Tushaar Kapoor, is all set for her upcoming Bollywood releases Sriram Raghavan’s thriller Badlapur and Harshavardhan Kulkarni’s Hunter.
“I’m playing Koko in Badlapur who is a money-minded and leisure-loving restaurateur. Koko brings the big twist in this thriller. In Hunter, my character, Tripti is a simple girl-next-door, who works in a regular office. Apart from their class and mindset disparities, both the characters have its own complexities,” Apte says.
With so much in her plate, how does Apte manage to keep her cool and go ahead with tough working hours?
“I’ve not yet got a role where I would have to train physically. But I know many actors in India and abroad who work on the characters physically as well, no matter how similar the role is. Method acting is a discovering process which lets us explore different personalities. It’s amazing to watch an actor doing a similar role yet in a completely different manner,” The 29 year old actress whose films down South run to full capacity, says.
Apte feels it is natural to get stereotyped in Bollywood as most protagonists fall into the rut and keep repeating stuff they have done. “No one wants to experiment with something that they have never done. It is sad but true,” the actress says. In her short stint in the film industries, Apte has made it a point to push herself to do various roles.
The thinking actor believes world cinema offers more opportunities for the actors to explore. “I have seen a lot of character actors change their style with every film. But in Bollywood and even in South cinema, main actors have one style and they find it hard to leave it or break free from the image because it affects their popularity. It is unfortunate that our industry thrives on such top actors,” Apte says, adding that most filmmakers shy away from experimenting with the characters, especially when it comes to portrayal of women in Bollywood.
“Women are either shown to be a fraud, a writer, housewife or an item. Her inherent nature in 90 per cent of the films is the same. Most stories are about an innocent girl who is sweet, loveable and childishly charming. After a point, the audience becomes bored,” Apte, who is shooting for her South film and has bagged an international short film, says. She plays the lead in The Field directed by Rohit Karn Batra which stars Hollywood and Bollywood actors Neeraj Kabi and Ronit Roy too.
Every girl’s Mr Riight
If you were wondering where TV hearthrob Barun Sobti has suddenly disappeared. We bring good news. The tall, dark and handsome Sobti who has as many Twitter followers as Britney Spears, is set to mark his debut on the big screen. Albeit in a very different avatar.
Sobti will be seen in his deehati best in Main Aur Mr Riight, a movie by Adeeb Rais. “This is completely not my territory. I had never envisaged that I would play such a role in my debut. As Sukhi in this film, I am a sadak chaap guy with bad dialect and irritating mannerisms. But despite my shabby self, I am supposedly the ‘Mr Riight’ for Aliya played by the bubbly Shenaz Tresurywala,” Sobti tells you from Delhi.
He adds that the story revolves around Aliya who during the search for her ‘Mr Riight’, stumbles upon Sukhi. “At first, she is grossly taken aback at my unkempt self. But Aliya takes it as a challenge to transform the deehati in me to a dapper gentleman! Guess what? She succeeds,” Sobti says, laughingly.
For a seasoned television actor like him, getting into the skin of a character is child’s play. Although Sobti admits that playing an over-the-top character like Sukhi was not a cakewalk. “People who know me were not surprised to see me in this avatar. Being a true Punjabi, I can relate to Sukhi in some way. But playing an extremely loud person was tough as it required a lot of energy. Many times, after I had given my shot, the director used to tell me; ‘Barun a little more over-the-top please.’ That was a tough cookie. By the time we wrapped up this film, I was on the verge of collapsing. Now that I am in Bollywood, I have to get myself acquainted with frequent travelling and shooting round-the-clock,” the modest actors, says.
Though every girl cherishes the dream of finding her ‘Mr Riight’, not everyone is lucky enough to get him. Sobti who rose to fame in Iss Pyar Ko Kya Naam Doon, a TV series that dealt with bad man-meets-good-girl-and-they-fall-in-love, believes that it is okay to fall for someone who is just the opposite of what you expected. “Opposites attract. Every girl aspires to have a perfect life partner and it’s an honest expectation. But I also am a firm believer that there is a someone especially for you. When you come across such a person, you will automatically fall in love and your relationship will bloom,” he says.
Does he fear that his image as the rich and arrogant guy will overshadow all his future characters? “I don’t think so. As an actor, I steer clear of stereotypes. So image building is not my thing. I had not expected to be stuck with the label of being rich nor do I want to be known as a road-side romeo. If you are an honest performer, you’ll just think about the scenes and how best you can deliver. I have tried to do my scenes as Barun and everything else is left to destiny,” Sobti who has three films in the pipeline including Satra Ko Shaadi Hai and 22 Yards, says.
Teaching men to court
She is talented, gorgeous, successful, a great sportswoman and a youth icon — Sania Mirza is multi-faceted and has proven that once again. The three-time Mixed Doubles Grand Slam champion has recently taken a deep dive into television for the second time. Her first brush with TV was with her husband Shoaib Malik on Nach Baliye. Now the star will be seen giving lessons to men on how to woo a woman in typical James Bond style through her vignette PIX School of BONDing on Sony Pix.
During this 12-week Bond Film Festival, Sony Pix will be airing 23 Bond films every Saturday at 7pm and 9pm, with a vignette that will be showcased in between the movies.
“Classy, subtle, understated and stylish. These four are the must- have qualities in men. When you think of Bond films, the first thing that comes to mind is style and technology. In my show, I’ll be trying to help men become Bond,” Mirza says.
From Sean Connery to David Niven, and from Pierce Brosnan to Daniel Craig, since 1962 many actors have portrayed 007. “We’ve all grown up watching Bond movies. My favourite is Pierce Brosnan. He is extremely good looking and a great actor,” she says. The tennis player is all set for International Premier Tennis League where she represents the Delhi franchise Indian Aces. “I’m excited to play in the same team as Fedex. I hope he recovers soon from his back injury though,” she says. No matter how busy she is in the court or attending social dos, Mirza makes it a point to catch up with masala films. “I love Bollywood! Goliyon Ki Raasleela: Ram-Leela was amazing but SRK’s Kuch Kuch Hota Hai is my all time favourite. I am all for a happy-ending in the film. Serious and emotional films are a one time watch only,” Mirza tells you.
Talking about her love for tennis and fashion, she says, “ Fashion is about comfort for me both on and off the field. When I’m on the court, it’s not so much about the looks but about trying to win and play my heart out,” she says.
(This article was published in the Pioneer Newspaper – http://www.dailypioneer.com/sunday-edition/sunday-pioneer/backpack/look-whos-making-news.html)