Who doesn’t like a good laugh, no? Especially during these times when the country is in the midst of the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, a light comedy is something that can instantly lift our spirits. Recently, Amazon Prime Video dropped Hello Charlie! starring Aadar Jain, Jackie Shroff, Shlokka Pandit and Elnaaz Nourouzi. The comedy film marked the debut of Shlokka Pandit, who says she always aspired to become an actress. I watched the film and I have got to say, she definitely killed it! I recently got a chance to interview the actress. She spoke about how she bagged the film, her experience filming for it and much more.
Here are the excerpts from the interview
How did Hello Charlie happen to you?
To be honest, it’s been a very long journey. I’ve been waiting for 7 years to get a film. So this is after a long period of no’s and rejections and I don’t know what’s gonna happen phase. Actually, I was auditioning at a casting office and over there I was assigned ‘Hello Charlie’. She asked me to go and audition for it and I did that. Over there I met Adar and we had three rounds of auditions and there were other girls there. After about a month or two later I received a call they informed me that I was selected. I was ecstatic! I had read my part but not the whole script, I knew some part of the drama and the madness that the film entails but I didn’t know everything. I was in a dark about it and whatever I knew about the character besides that she’s so feisty, full of heart and she has a big dance number on Kanika’s song and at that point, this was not decided. But I was excited because I love to dance and I was happy to know that I will get a chance to showcase that as well.
How will you describe your 7-year-long journey?
It’s tough, it’s not easy and I do agree that I am privileged in a way because I never had to move to different cities or stay in a rented place. I have my house and family here. So all that is a plus and I’m not complaining about that. But, people around you start giving advice, start calling you a failure and a lot of that happened and whenever you try to break the stereotypes and do something different, that’s what happens and it’s not the relatives but friends and family friends who come and advice parents that maybe you should get her married. They give you uncalled-for advice like maybe you should switch profession, you should talk her out of it, or try for a TV role but not movies because it is out of the way and it’s never going to happen. No matter what happened, sometimes there were times when I felt maybe I should give up but i brushed all such thoughts aside and I believe in my god, I pray a lot and I’m very spiritual and I knew that if the power of the universe and I’m aligned then it’s possible. It’s possible for anyone. So I’m extremely grateful that I’m finally here.
Comedy is a difficult genre. What was your prep like?
Comedy as a genre is extremely difficult and the timing is everything. We weren’t actively doing comedy we were just playing our parts seriously. The whole movie is based on situations and the script is written so well that it feels like we are doing comedy but in actual everyone is playing their roles seriously. So we weren’t actively doing comedy but our director was very particular about our dialogues, timings but at the same time he gave us the freedom to explore ourselves as an actor and we were very well prepared before going to the sets. All the actors were well acquainted with each other, we knew our parts but we never over-rehearsed.
How do you feel about ‘Hello Charlie’ releasing on an OTT platform?
I’m very excited and the fact that, during a pandemic of this scale, my film is coming out. I’m grateful that we are entertaining so many more people than we would with a theatrical release. And I have family and friends across the world so for them it’s a boon for them as well. But yes, every actor wants to see themselves on the big screen and I’m sure in future I will see myself in the theatre and I’m not complaining about this.
I sure can’t wait to see what Shlokka has in store for us!