Vishal Bharadvaj’s Pataakha starring Sanya Malhotra and Radhika Madan as a lead is based on Charan Singh Pathik’s short story, Do Behnein, it revolves around two sisters, Badki and Chhutki who grow up in a small village in Rajasthan and are constantly at war but when marriage separates them, they realize they can’t seem to live with or without each other.
Meanwhile, We had an absolute fun-time interacting with Sanya !
In an interaction with Cinespeaks, Radhika says…
Q. It’s your Bollywood debut so how was the experience and how difficult was it to get into the skin of the character?
Radhika: The experience was definitely huge! I’m loving the space I’m I right now. Talking about the difficulties, As soon as I cracked the auditions, I was asked to get tanned as the character’s requirement is a brown skin and I’m quite fair comparatively. So I used to sit in hot sun for three to four long hours but that didn’t work out. Later I was made to apply 4 to 5 hands of makeup to make me look brown. Talking about mentally getting into the character, we had several workshops, various rounds of readings with Vishal sir. After that we visited the village to know the surroundings more finely. Before visiting the place, I was pretty confident about my dialogues, but after coming across the villagers that confidence faded away. They don’t speak in Hindi, they talk in their mother tongue and it’s a speedy language which was above the head for us. We literally did every single activity which they used to do, we washed the cattle, we practiced the milking process, we prepared cow dung cakes, we woke up at 4 am slept early, in short did every single thing along with those villagers. This helped us a lot in getting into the skin of our character. Within 4 days, our dialect got smoothen.
Q. So taking that thing forward, how was the experience living in the village for so many days?
Radhika: It was Lovely! Being in a city like Mumbai, we’re isolated from out actual culture which rural people still follow. And I’m a typical ‘Dad’s princess’ kind of girl. So I lived every single bit of it. And I was supposed to look a typical village girl who stays there since childhood. So I was any whichway supposed to pick the cow dung up. So instead of doing it with irritation, I preferred doing it with all my heart, so my approach made a difference.
Q. Prior to your Bollywood debut with ‘Pataakha’ you were playing the lead in a daily soap. So what change did you experience in movies to that from television.
Radhika: The only difference which I feel is while working in a daily soap, you don’t have time to explore your character. We’ve to shoot minimum of 7 scenes a day. There are several issues which arises like telecast problems. In movies, you have an ample amount of time to play with your character, explore it to the fullest.
Q. Not everyone gets a chance to mark their debut with Vishal Bharadwaj, so how’s your take, working with him?
Radhika: I’m blessed that I got my first film from Vishal sir. The film is about to release and even now, I feel that this is a heavenly dream. He is so humble despite being such a huge name in the industry. He is open to every idea which you propose, either he’ll get convinced else he’ll convince you. It was such a pleasant experience working with him!
Q. These days, directors are creating larger than life shows, where a lady turns into a fly etc. What’s your take on that?
Radhika: Directors don’t wish to take any risk. They’re aware of the fact that such shows does great business. They don’t wish to take up risks. But they don’t think other way around, they’ve the power to manipulate the thoughts of people. There should be one such courageous director who can make a show which is relatable. That’s the reason, youth is more focused towards digital platform. They wish to watch relatable stuffs which they don’t find it on television.
Q. How was the experience working with Sunil Grover and Sanya?
Radhika: Sunil Grover is the wittiest person I ever have come across to. He has so many different thoughts going on in his head. He just can’t be blank. Even if there’s a serious discussion going on, there will be some or the other jokes going on in his head, and his simple smile will make us realize that something humorous is on its way to hit us hard! When I saw Sanya’s performance in Dangal, I was blew away! She is so fantastic actress. When I first met her, she appeared as an introvert person, calm, composed and subtle mannerism. She’s the most important person in my life right now. And being such good friends off-screen it was difficult for us to be rivals on-screen. Our chemistry was so strong, but our professionalism over-powered it for time being. When we’re in our characters, I literally felt irritated by her presence. I used to feel that why the hell is she alive, but as the scene gets over, I hug her so tights for minutes, we showed such deep concern that we burst out in tears. I literally used to sleep with her, I am afraid of sleeping alone so Sanya used to accompany me.
Written by: Aakash Gala