‘I am a script dependent actor’

Swara Bhaskar

After remarkable performances in films like Tanu Weds Manu, Swara Bhaskar is creating waves at international festivals with her newest film Nil Battey Sannata. SANGEETA YADAV chats her up on the eve of the release of another biggie Prem Ratan Dhan Payo

  • Your film Nil Battey Sannata was the toast of the Silk Road International Film Festival in China and now the London Film Fest. Tell us more about it?

Nil Battey Sannata is the story of a mother battling to ensure her daughter has every opportunity in life, whether she wants it or not. It is a powerful account of motherly love and the turbulent conflict that can exist between generations. I am happy that it has got such a warm response and my work has been appreciated. The inspirational movie will also be screened at the on-going coveted International Rome Film Festival.

  • How was it working with Salman Khan in Prem Ratan Dhan Payo (PRDP)?

Initially, I was nervous about acting opposite Salman Khan as his sister. He noticed my state and to make me comfortable he gave me a cue during my act. I was touched by his gesture. He is a cordial and positive person. He can dissipate any kind of tension.

  • Anything special that you learnt from him?

Salman isn’t like those actors who take themselves too seriously and throw attitude. Despite always joking around, he is completely clued into the scene and often adds that little something to it to give it power. He has no reservations in giving retakes if it is not coming out well. That’s a great quality I have learnt from him.

  • Was it difficult to get into the shoe of the character?

I’m playing royalty for the first time. The aristocratic look and mannerisms were styled by Salman’s sister Avira and Ashley Rebello. They have done a fabulous job in keeping a balance between Indianness, elegance and aristocracy.

  • You views on Sooraj Barjatia.

Sooraj sir is as nice and sweet as the films he produces. He makes sure the crew is comfortable and giving its best. I learnt from him the importance of being in the moment as an actor.

  • You and Sonam are working together for the second time…

This time I have more screen space with Sonam than I had in Raanjhana. We have sat and watched item songs of Madhuri Dixit like humko aaj kal hai intazaar and chaney ke khet mein on the sets and have had a good time with each other.

  • Will it will be difficult for you to outshine in a multi-starrer?

It doesn’t matter. You have to give 100 per cent. I’m a script dependent actor and I always read the script word to word, make notes, do my homework and prepare a back story for my character. Then I come on the set and forget about it and interact with other stars. That way, you are prepared and can also improvise.

  • You have been associated with the Whisper awareness campaign. Talking about periods and reproduction is still taboo…

Yes. It’s important to break the taboo around the issue discuss it as children. It should be an integral part of the curricula and should be talked about it in an open and healthy way not just among girls but also boys. Initiatives like Whisper India’s School Programme and Whisper India’s Touch The Pickle Movement are the need of the hour.

(The article was published in the Pioneer Newspaper – http://www.dailypioneer.com/sunday-edition/sunday-pioneer/backpack/i-am-a-script-dependent-actor.html)

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