By Karan Shah
My big break came when I played Shamma Parveen in Gangs of Wasseypur I and II. Now, I have just completed shooting for a film directed by a new director Shefali Bhushan, titled Jugni.
I was called to audition for Gang of Wasseypur and was selected within a few minutes as the casting director was impressed with my work. For Jugni, director Shefali Bhushan asked me to come for an audition, and the next day I was already working in the film. Whatever work I have got so far, be it for films or commercials, I have always auditioned for the role. I believe it works best for me.
I come from a very educated family based in Bihar. Everyone expected me to become a doctor as I had just finished my second year junior college from BITS Pilani. However, my aim was to earn the title of Miss India and I participated in a Get Gorgeous beauty pageant in Delhi and won it. Since then, my life has been on a roll. Matrix hired me and I walked the ramp for Lakme and Wills Lifestyle Fashion Week. I then shifted to Mumbai, did some television commercials, and was the face for Himalaya and Nokia as well. The big break came when I was selected for Gangs of Wasseypur. After my bit role in the film, I shifted my focus to theatre and was active for the PRAVAH theater, where I did the play Pillars of the Community with director Neeraj Kabi. And now, I am playing the lead in Jugni.
For Gangs of Wasseypur, my first shot saw me mourning over someone’s death, and I slipped into the role with relative ease. For my first shot in Jugni, I was shooting in Punjab, where the weather was freezing cold, so it was a very exciting yet challenging shot.
My films have been a learning ground for me. I have learnt that an actor has to be ready on the sets, as a scene has to be canned within the stipulated time frame. Besides, some roles are about emotional journeys, so you have to always be in that right mental state and constantly work on your craft.
I haven’t had any problems while shooting as such, but I had to learn Punjabi for Jugni as I play a Punjabi girl. So while shooting, I had to maintain the Punjabi accent in some of the scenes which was difficult, but I mastered it.
If you had asked me this question a year ago, then my answer would be some known person or a superstar. But, now I would say that the people around me in my everyday life, the crew, directors, producers, co-actors are my role models as I interact with them daily and have learnt to live and enjoy myself with them.
I have just finished shooting for Jugni. I am acting in a few plays, and am also in talks for two films. It’s only after I sign them, will I be at a liberty to reveal anything.