Actor Aamna Sharif is back, this time not as a homely girl from TV show Kahiin Toh Hoga or as the glamorous Komolika from Kasautii Zindagii Kay 2, but as a cop in the third season of the web show, Damaged. The actor feels proud to headline a show, along with co-star Shrenu Parikh, and is glad to have found a role which allowed her to challenge the actor in her.
In an interview with Hindustan Times, Aamna opened up about why she chose Damaged on Hungama Play as her comeback vehicle and what she is looking in a project to take up more work. Excerpts:
We hardly get to see you on screen. Why?
I had recently done Kasautii Zindagi Kay 2 (in 2020). I had deliberately taken a break for a while because I wanted to concentrate on my family life. Now you will get to see more of me.
What made you say yes to Damaged?
As soon as I heard the script, I knew I am doing this. It is one of the roles that I have always wanted to play. It is opposite to what I have done so far. As an actor you need to be versatile, shock audiences with your performances, which only comes with something that is not in your comfort zone. This character was definitely not in my comfort zone. It is drastically opposite to who I am in my personal life. A lot of prep has gone into doing the role of Rashami (her character in Damaged).
What was the prep?
My character is not just a tough cop but also has shades of grey. I wanted to get into the skin of the character and did a couple of workshops with not just my director but also worked on own self. I disconnected from my close-knit social circle ten days before the shoot. I wanted to be on my own. I watched a lot of interviews, documentaries on cops. I wanted to understand their mannerisms, their body language to how they behave in a particular manner.
As a cop, I also have a lot of scenes in which I am using a gun which I had never used in life. My director Vikrant sir gave me a gun to keep with me in my house before the shoot. He said, ‘practice, try to make this a part of your life so that when you are on a set, it should not look unnatural when you are holding a gun.’
I never abused in Hindi in my life, that’s the reason I went ahead with the workshop because I did not want to not look natural on screen. As an actor, everyday is like a learning experience for you. I never performed action scenes in my life, this character gave me that opportunity. It took a lot for me to play this character. I would get back home but couldn’t disconnect with this character for quite some time.
You shot to fame with Kahiin To Hoga almost 19 years ago. You moved to films and then returned to TV. Do You think the small screen still has some perks of its own over the advantage of the big screen?
I also feel fortunate enough to have a space like OTT. For me, none of these mediums are different from each other. The scale may be different the way films are shot but it all boils down to working with different directors. It could be TV, films or OTT. Over all these years I have experienced that if the content is good and the execution is good, it finds its space with the audience. Audience is today accepting and ready to watch anything that they can relate to or can find good content.
You again disappeared in 2013 to get married, have a kid and then made a comeback with Kasautii Zindagii Kay 2? Do you find it difficult to make a comeback everytime you leave?
It’s a difficult process for me. I did experience a lot of rejections after that because I had taken a break for long. People thought that I had a taken a break so I won’t have a career anymore. If I am married or because I have a child, I won’t have a career anymore. Unfortunately, there is still certain section of people which still has a mentality that just because you are attached to certain things, you can’t get back to work. The journey has not been easy for me. By the end of it, it’s the work that speaks. If you have it in you, people notice you and you get work. That has worked for me.
Have you lost out on a major project for being married?
Definitely. More than being married, the tag that got attached with me was that I come from television background — whether I can be a part of a film project or an OTT project. I just hope people see us as what we are, they take us for the actor we are. I think we are getting there.
Also read: Aamna Sharif says she was ‘very bad as an actor’ when Kahiin To Hoga started
Are you looking for something specific?
The role has to be very, very challenging to what I have already done. I just don’t want to work for the sake of it. I want to do projects that excite me, something that I can feel I can do justice to and am willing to go out of my way to put in everything into a character. I also have my dream directors, I hope I get that opportunity to work with them.
How’s life as a mom of a six-year-old?
It’s beautiful, its been the most beautiful journey of my life.
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