Interview : Shraddha Das Gupta

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The leading lady of LAHORE- Shraddha Das- recently breezed in Kolkata for the film’s promotion. The actor speaks to our correspondent on her film and more

LAHORE was a pretty different start for your Hindi film career…
It was so exciting to start off with such a different kind of film. The international responses have been great and even here the reviews are so great. We made the film from the heart and the kind of appreciation we are getting is very heart warming.

You started your career with Telegu films and now a Hindi one…
Oh yes, I am definitely open to working in all languages. I’m doing a couple of films down South. It’s the acting that matters to me.

Tell us about your role in the movie…
I play a Pakistani girl called Ida. She’s the psychiatrist of the Pakistani team and she’s the only one who seems to stand up against the team’s blind thirst for

“Deepika Padukone is very glamorous…”

victory. And she falls in love in with the Indian kickboxer (laughs)!

So how did you prepare for your role?
I think it was bit of a challenge for me to get into the character of a conservative Pakistani girl. I had to get the body language and also be familiar with their culture. It was different for me because I grew up in Mumbai. So I learnt a bit of Urdu, watched PTV and got familiar with the culture. It was nice.

And how did you enter the world of movies?
I was born and brought up in Mumbai, though both my parents are from Bengal. My dad’s from Purulia and I used to come to Kolkata a lot as a child. I always wanted to be in showbiz. I did a course in Journalism and Mass Communication and then decided to enter the world of movies. I have done a couple of movies down south.

view LAHORE movie stills

view LAHORE movie stills

How was it to work with newcomer Aanaahad?
For me it was great. I think that as we were both newcomers, it was very comfortable for both us. We were both making the same kind of mistakes (laughs), we did the acting workshops together and we had a good chemistry.

Sanjay Chauhan is being seen as a very technically proficient director. How was it working with him?
It was a treat to work with Sanjay Chauhan. He’s such a perfectionist and a tough taskmaster. He had a very clear idea of what he wanted. We got to learn a lot from him.

LAHORE has been denied a release in Pakistan…
It’s definitely regrettable. The Pakistani High Commissioner saw the film in Delhi, he liked it a lot. And it’s not like there was blatant Pakistan-bashing in the film. It contains a very important message for both our countries.

Are you excited about the international achievements of the film…
Well, I couldn’t go to a lot of these places. But it feels so great. It’s like stamp of approval on the film. In the end however the love of audience is the important thing to me.

Among Bollywood stars, your favourites are…
I really like the way Deepika Padukone puts herself forward. She’s very glamorous and yet maintains such a poise and dignity. And I also really like Rani Mukherjee.

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