What Attracted Kriti To Bachchan Pandey

‘I play an urban girl after a very long time.’
‘What I saw in her was that she was very, very, gutsy.’

While 2021 was not a great year in the grand scheme of things, it turned out to be an amazing one for Kriti Sanon, as she delivered her career-best performance in Mimi.

The actress has seen success before, but she admits that Mimi‘s success changed a lot of things for her.

“I see the questions changing. When you walk into a room, the way people react to you has changed. The kinds of opportunities in front of you have changed,” Kriti tells Rediff.com Contributor Mohnish Singh.

As shown in the trailer, there is a lot of camaraderie between Arshad Warsi and you. What was it like working with him?

When I found out that he was playing that role in the film, I knew I was going to have a lot of scenes with him, possibly more than with Akshay sir. We have never worked together before, and it was supposed to be that buddy bonding.

We met for the first time on the flight when we were going to Jaisalmer.

We were seated next to each other by chance, and we ended up chatting a lot.

I think there was no ice to break. It just became like that.

There were times when there was nothing that could be done in a particular scene. There wasn’t much written about it.

So we would be like, ‘Let’s just do something.’

And we have actually screamed at each other!

That can only happen when you get to that comfort level and you trust them enough to be like, ‘Let’s make a scene.’

Post pandemic, there are actors who are struggling to get good films but you are climbing higher with every film. How have you planned this?

I signed the maximum number of films in 2020, which is very strange.

I think people were sitting at home, and a lot of writing happened during that time.

Different kinds of films came to me, which is always very exciting for an actor because you can choose to be a part of different worlds.

I am fortunate that I am finally getting many more opportunities to choose from.

I was just telling Arshad that there was a time when it was very easy to get typecast in the same kind of roles.

After Bareilly Ki Barfi, 99 percent of the offers coming to me were small-town films, in a similar genre.

It is nice to reach a point where people are asking, ‘What kind of film do you want to do?’

It’s very rare, and not something I’ve heard before.

It’s very exciting because you can tell people, you know, I want to do this genre, or I haven’t touched this kind of world yet, or I’d love to play a grey character…

I think the change is simply lovely.

I hope this year is special too, starting with Bachchhan Paandey.

As you mentioned, the year 2020 was the busiest for you due to the scripts coming your way. If we look at your filmography, the films ranged from Mimi to Hum Do Humare Do and now Bachchhan Paandey, followed by Bhediya and Adipurush.
What factors do you look into when you sign a commercial film, as you are juggling between both worlds?

See, I think you just need to be true to your character, like where is it is coming from, what kind of film it is, and all of it.

It’s not that if it’s a comedy film, I have to start doing loud acting.

Here, I play an urban girl after a very long time.

What I saw in her was that she was very, very, gutsy.

She was a go-getter.

She was someone who wanted to make a film and chose this really dangerous guy to make a film on. She had the courage to come from where she did, call a friend, and be in this dangerous world of men, doing her thing.

That attracted me to the character.

Which are your favourite Akshay Kumar films?

There are so many… Namastey London, Good Newwz, Mission Mangal

I loved Aflatoon.

Why don’t we see two-hero films anymore?

Yes, there are very, very few.

I have personally been in situations where I was offered a film which was like a 60-40 — with 60 being the girl and 40 being the guy. Most men would not be willing to do it.

In fact, nobody was willing to do it.

So I feel that it is just sad, and it should obviously change.

I feel what Akshay sir did in Atrangi Re is just so commendable and amazing.

To see an actor of his level come in for a good but small part and not feel insecure about it is great.

Do you feel that post Mimi, people’s perception towards you has changed?

This film came to me before Mimi.

I see the questions changing also, so that happens.

When you walk into a room, the way people react to you has changed.

The kinds of opportunities in front of you have changed.

Like this film, and this role is very, very, exciting.

You are one of the busiest female actors in the industry, and Akshay Kumar is one of the busiest male actors. Many people on social media call you the ‘female Akshay Kumar’.

Really? I have no idea.

If I earn that much money, then maybe… (laughs)

How do you choose your scripts?

You first hear it, and think, ‘Would you want to watch this film? Do you like it when you hear the script?’

If you didn’t like the film, but you liked the character a lot, then it is of no use.

When the film doesn’t work, nothing works.

But if you like the film, sometimes it happens that the character is not as exciting as you thought or that you have done something very similar recently…

If you really want to play this character, then you already know it.

It’s more of a gut feeling.

You will be stepping into the action zone with Ganapath. How excited are you about that?

I am excited and also very nervous.

I look athletic, but I am not.

I get injured very often.

I am excited because it is something I have wanted to do for a very long time.

I think I have got the body frame that it (action) needs, and I am excited to learn because it is new.

I did a little bit of action in Ganapath during our first schedule. There is one schedule pending where I have to do a lot more, so it’s a lot of hard work.

Tiger Shroff has done it for so many years.

Sometimes I feel I should have learnt it in my childhood and, like Tiger, I should have jumped when he was only four years old. I would have just been like him then!

It’s harder to learn when you have passed a certain age.

Is there any plan to explore the digital space?

I am open to it, but I have not signed anything else.

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