She began her career with an intense film like Margarita With A Straw, and in no time, Sayani Gupta signed Anurag Basu‘s Jagga Jasoos with Bollywood biggest stars like Ranbir Kapoor and Katrina Kaif. But that wasn’t it, her talent won her a role with King Khan in Fan and Sidharth Malhotra and Katrina in Baar Baar Dekho. Team MissMalini sat down with this talented actress and learnt so much more about her.
How did you land Fan?
I have landed all my films through auditions. Margarita With A Straw had released then and I suddenly saw a message on my Facebook from Shanoo (Sharma)’s office asking me to come for an open audition. I ignored it, after a couple of days, I got another message saying, ‘we’re trying to get in touch with you.’ They were trying to call me on my earlier number. I had four-five rounds of auditions over two months. I had no idea which movie it was for. Shanoo called me one evening and the next day, I met them and then I got the confirmation.
How was it working with Shah Rukh Khan?
On the first day, I had a scene with him and I thought Manish Sharma would introduce me to him. But we just started rehearsing, we hadn’t even said ‘hi’. Suddenly, he turned towards me and said, “Oh baby, I don’t know your name ya.” And he hugged me. He hugs everyone before leaving. So, after he went, he came back again and said, “Baby, you’re really talented. You have a long way to go.” I froze, I couldn’t even say thanks. He’s actually so cool. He just wants to make you feel special.
Did you always want to act?
Yeah, ever since I was 4. I did my first play around then. I went to Delhi for college, I started doing backstage and worked in plays. Then I later went to FTII and specialised in acting.
Did you feel any skepticism when you entered the industry?
No, I was in FTII, so I knew a lot of people. I’m realistic and I thought that immediately no one is going to hire me as an actor. I’ll probably have to start assisting and work as an AD. But I got my first ad in the second week of being in Bombay and got my first film in the first month of being here. My only thing was that everyone who is making movies needs to know me. I was doing 8-9 auditions in a day.
One thing you’ve learnt from each of your co-stars…
Kalki, she is very close to me and one of my biggest support systems. She is great with her time management. She does so much, so much theatre work… shoots, fashion, films, she writes. She’s incredible. Kalki’s managers are racing against time.
SRK… one thing I realised is no matter how big you become, humility is something that takes you far. You should never forget your roots. And to give everyone importance no matter who he or she is.
Sidharth is very disciplined, very well brought up and very sweet.
Katrina is extremely, extremely hardworking. Very professional and very focused. Focus is something I hope I can have. She knows what she wants.
Ranbir… definitely some acting chops. He has a lot of method, but you can’t see his method. He is very spontaneous as well. One of the things he does is he surrenders himself to the director he’s working with. It’s a very difficult thing to do.
Did you strike any good friendships with them?
Ranbir, Katrina, Sidharth, they’re all people I can speak to, I can write to them, we sit and chill. But they’re obviously not my 3 am friends. Kalki and I became very good friends because it was such an intense film.