Shreya Dhanwanthary, who garnered acclaim from Scam 1992, The Family Man franchise, among others is currently on cloud nine as she gears up for Chup: Revenge of the Artist that releases on September 23. In an exclusive chat with The Free Press Journal, she talks about her being fortunate, working with co-actors and more. Excerpts:
You seem to be quite fortunate with films like Chup... and Adbhut too early in your career. Your thoughts?
I don’t know what to say when I read my name on the poster of Chup… along with such great actors like Dulquer Salmaan, Sunny Deol, and Pooja Bhatt, I can’t believe it. I don’t know if I am choosing the right projects or I am doing well. I am grateful that I have gotten great comments and reviews so far. I felt I would get bashed at some point since it is inevitable, but I am glad that it has been like that till now. I hope I can continue to keep getting opportunities.
R. Balki is known for experimenting with subjects and with Chup… you are a part of his world. How do you feel?
It was an immediate love for Balki and this is the case with me for the people I work with generally. I feel ecstatic that I got to work with him in Chup… He is someone who gives me a playground to perform. I don’t think he is a task master rather he is too kind and sensitive. As actors, we always starve for affection and Balki used to say words like spectacular, fabulous, stunning after every shot.
How well are you aware of Guru Dutt’s cinematic universe?
I grew up in the Middle East and the only connection with India was through films. As a result, I ended up watching a lot more films than the average Indian kid did. I saw Kaagaz Ke Phool a long time ago, which is also about a filmmaker’s journey, and even Chup... is something like that, so it’s a little metaphorical.
Were you intimidated by stalwarts of the 1990s, Sunny Deol and Pooja Bhatt?
I think everyone was a little terrified of me whenever I was on the sets. People say Sunny is shy, but with me he wasn’t. Pooja is like my soulmate, like ‘do jism, ek jaan’. We all got along very well. I am like a bulldozer who doesn’t see ice at all (laughs). I feel that the more I meet different people in the industry, the more interesting I become as a person.
How do you feel about creating your own fanbase on OTT with shows like Mumbai Diaries 26/11, The Family Man franchise?
I don’t want to take credit for choosing good roles and scripts. It all has to do with timing and luck. I have worked really hard for a decade and I have started to get lucky now.
Do you feel more responsible with an amazing slate of projects in your kitty starting with Chup…?
I myself am not aware of how my journey will unfold from here on. Like an audience, I am also waiting for my films. There are days when I have anxiety, but most of the time it’s excitement.
Courtesy: The Free Press Journal