Interviews ...

“Travelling solo is a form of meditation for me” – Smriti Kalra

For the longest time, one saw Smriti Kalra playing several memorable characters on television. Over the years, she was seen in several popular shows like ’12/24 Karol Bagh’, ‘Suvreen Guggal – Topper of The Year’, ‘Itti Si Khushi’ and ‘Dil Sambhal Jaa Zara’. In the year 2021, Smriti forayed into cinema with ‘Cash’. In the near future, the actress wishes to explore the streaming space as well.

A couple of weeks back, Smriti had a theatrical release in the form of ‘Kaagaz 2’. In the film, she got the opportunity to share the screen with veterans like Anupam Kher, Satish Kaushik and Neena Gupta.

In this interview, Smriti talks about the feedback coming her way post the release of ‘Kaagaz 2’, the experience of watching herself on the big screen, memories of the late Satish Kaushik, love for travel and more.

It has been a while since ‘Kaagaz 2’ released. What is the kind of response you have received for your performance in the film?

My fans are like family to me. Even they treat me like a family member. A lot of them asked me how I felt when I watched myself on the big screen. It was the first time a film of mine had got such a wide release in the theatres. I have been getting some wonderful response after the release of the film. My fans are happy to see me on the big screen.

A lot of people have seen the film. There are many who haven’t seen it as well. When the trailer came out, it was watched by a large number of people. The number of people who watched the film in the theatre was a little lesser. Maybe, we could have marketed the film better. Once it comes out on a streaming platform and TV, I am hoping that more people will watch it.

How did you feel when you watched yourself on the big screen?

While watching ‘Kaagaz 2’ on the big screen, I told myself, “I didn’t think I would look so good on the screen (laughs). I felt very happy watching myself on the big screen. When you see yourself on a big or small screen, you tend to get very critical of your performance. Sometimes, you feel the make-up could have been better. At times, you feel there was some issue with the lighting. My parents were very happy. That is what gave me a lot of joy. I want to see myself more on screen. I hope to do a lot more work.

Every character, that an actor plays, teaches an actor something. Sometimes, they bring out a change in their lives as well. Did playing Tanisha in ‘Kaagaz 2’ change you in any way?

No, playing Tanisha did not change anything within me. In fact, a lot of my personality traits were borrowed to create Tanisha. For instance, the writer told me that the way you wish ‘good morning’ to people is very nice. That is how you should say ‘good morning’ as Tanisha as well. There were a lot of similarities between Tanisha and me. Tanisha is free-spirited like me. Perhaps, Tanisha reminded me of a few things I had started forgetting about myself.

In an interview, you had stated that Satish Kaushik had a child-like heart and enthusiasm. ‘Kaagaz 2’ gave you the opportunity to work with him for the first time.

Whenever I speak about Satish sir, I speak in the present tense. Acceptance is a very difficult thing. It’s still hard to accept that Satish sir is no longer with us in physical form. When you read articles on him and see his performances on the screen, you feel he is still around.

You gave a self-test for the film when the world was grappling with the Covid-19 situation.

Once I gave the self-test, I felt very confident and thought I would get the part. However, soon the team informed me that I was not selected. I felt a little upset. A couple of months later, they called me again. This time, they informed me that I had been finalized to play Tanisha. At that time, I was shooting for ‘Darran Chhoo’ in Bhopal. They wanted me to be in Lucknow to shoot for ‘Kaagaz 2’. There was some issue with the dates but somehow, things fell into place. 

You have a passion for travelling. A while back, you travelled across Nagaland and Sikkim. Do you think travelling has helped you grow as an artist and a person?

Absolutely! If you stay in one room for an entire week, you will feel irritated. When you step out, you will speak to a few people. You might observe something new. You learn so much when you travel. Travelling also reminds you of the fact that if your brain, heart and body are functioning properly, you are capable of doing anything. Sometimes, people feel scared about travelling solo. It helps you get over your fears. When you travel on your own, you realize you can survive all by yourself. It helps you stay in the moment.

Travelling solo is a form of meditation for me. You have no one around when you are travelling on your own. Your attention span increases and you become more alert. When you read a newspaper or scroll through social media, you come across both positive and negative things. Somehow, our mind gets conditioned to believe in negative information. When you travel, you realize the world is a beautiful place. Before expecting love and kindness from somebody, you need to ask yourself whether you are warm, helpful and loving towards others. If you are, you will get warmth and love from others. I love travelling solo. It changes you as a person in so many different ways. It also helps me as an artist. The more people you meet, the more you learn.

What are you working on at the moment?

I am not shooting for anything at the moment. I read a few scripts but didn’t find anything to be exciting enough. I hope some interesting part comes my way soon.

You have not done a TV show in a while. Would you do a TV show again?

Absolutely! I would love to do television again. Actors who come from TV are much more popular than movie stars. Television continues to have the biggest reach in India. When you do a show, people see you every day. I don’t want to play a character which is similar to something I have done in the past. I really want to be a part of a romantic story.

Disclaimer: This story is auto-aggregated by a computer program and has not been created or edited by filmibee.
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