With interesting flicks like U-Turn, Operation Alamelamma and Vikram Vedha now under her belt, actor Shraddha Srinath seems to be making all the right moves in her career. With a strong role in Vikram Vedha alongside R. Madhavan, Shraddha Srinath has impressed everyone with her acting prowess in the film. Shraddha is now spreading her wings and making her debut in Telugu cinema too.
In an exclusive interview to Pinkvilla South, Shraddha Srinath gets candid about her career, acting alongside Madhavan and experience of working with Mani Ratnam.
Your Kannada film Operation Alamelamma has become a hit. Was the team confident that it would become such huge hit?
I’ll be honest… No (Laughs). That’s a good thing actually because one cannot be too confident from the start since you cannot predict the audience’s taste or mood. Operation Alamelamma is director Suni’s first attempt at making a thriller based genre and he is known for making comedy genre based films. Rishi is, of course, an incredible actor as well know. So, there was no star power in this film and all of us were relatively new and yeah, we weren’t expecting the film to do so well. We were sure the script would work though.
Vikram Vedha has turned out to be a stupendous success. How was the experience of working with directors Pushkar-Gayatri?
I hadn’t watched any of Pushkar-Gayatri’s previous films when Vikram Vedha came to me. From what I had heard about them, they made film ahead of their times. Working with them was incredible. They are a couple and their clarity in terms of work is mind-blowing. They are in sync with each other as a team. They share the tasks on hand and the final product turns out to be the best because of the sync they are in always. I love them both, personally and professionally.
First film with Madhavan. How was the experience of working with an actor who has such a vast experience?
I’m new to this industry and I felt lucky to be selected for a film like this which has two amazing stars from the industry. I was nervous, initially, to work with Maddy because I had a tiny fear at the back of my mind which is ‘What if I get overshadowed by their performances’. But Maddy didn’t let that affect my performance. He made me so comfortable and the chemistry onscreen was crackling because of that. Madhavan is an interesting person and you can talk to him about anything under the sun. He knows a lot and has so many stories to tell from his vast career.
How was it being in a frame and be directed by Mani Ratnam?
I had a limited time on the sets of Kaatru Veliyidai since it was a cameo. Like we all have a checklist in our life with special things listed, working with Mani sir was one of those things for me. I wanted to have a strike-off against this in my list and I could do it. And also, as an actor you grow up watching few people and idolising few people, and to me, Mani sir is one of them. And when you get to work with such amazing genius at such an early stage of your career, you will have to pinch and tell yourself ‘Hey! This is real’. Mani sir exudes passion in every single scene of his film. I’m not satisfied with this cameo though. You just want more and more when it comes to working with Mani Ratnam.
You have been choosing offbeat roles right from the beginning. What is that one element you look for before agreeing to do any character?
I should see some amount of strength in the character I would play. The character should have a purpose to exist and contribute to the story from the beginning till the end. I just feel that such scripts find their way to me and this right from my first film U-Turn. Interesting and serious filmmakers are approaching me and hence I end up doing such roles. I try to keep my characters real and which can inspire and can be related to.
You are making a debut in Telugu cinema now. Tell us more about that.
I’m actually working on two films – one is directed by Ravikanth Perepu and other one with Aadi in the lead. Ravikanth Perepu got me madly in love with my character in his film. Ravi and I got along so well, I don’t know how, but thanks to my character Sathya in the film who is a Bharatanatyam dancer. The character is very interesting. I have gotten into the skin of that character so much that Ravikanth now calls me Sathya and not Shraddha. He says that he sees Sathya whenever he looks at rushes of the film. That’s the best compliment any actor could ever get! Ravikanth is young and has taken up direction at a very young age without much prior experience in assisting anyone. His first film has won him so laurels and that only speaks volume about his abundant talent. He is a prodigy.
So, will you dub for yourself in Telugu?
Yes, absolutely. Both the directors of my Telugu films want me to dub for myself. I’m always for dubbing for my own characters. I tried dubbing for myself in Tamil also but something was off and didn’t work out.