The Bengaluru girl, who forayed into the industry with Neelakanta's Maaya, is back in action with renewed zest, set to make her Tamil debut with a romantic entertainer Enna Solla Pogirai and is close to signing a Telugu project as well
Last Updated: 02.01 PM, Dec 06, 2021
Actress Avantika Mishra was in the second year of her college when her first film Maaya came her way in Telugu. Her tryst with modelling lead her into the film world. She was naive, had very little clue of what she was getting into, and was naturally overwhelmed by the entire experience. The film managed to earn acclaim for its unusually gripping plot and a series of offers landed on her lap in Telugu, be it the college comedy Meeku Meere Maaku Meme, the romantic drama Vaisakham or the wacky thriller comedy Meeku Mathrame Cheptha.
Success eluded her in her initial years and it wasn't the easiest of things for a young Avantika to deal with a film's failure. The proof of her talent was that the offers never dried up and the pandemic went a long way in shaping her into a better performer and an empathetic human being. In what can be termed as a resurgence, the actress is now much more composed, mature and sure of herself, personally and professionally.
Avantika is more excited than ever before to submit herself to her characters. She is close to signing a Telugu film again and has four Tamil films in her kitty, two of which, Enna Solla Pogirai and D Block, are gearing up for a release shortly. "Enna Solla Pogirai, a slice-of-life romantic entertainer, where I play the female lead, will be my Tamil debut that's hitting theatres on December 24. After that, I have another release called D Block, a thriller where I am paired opposite Arulnithi. I have signed two more films in Tamil and am very close to finalising a Telugu offer," the young girl is all enthusiastic.
Opening up about her character in Enna Solla Pogirai (where she is paired opposite Ashwin Kumar Lakshmikanthan), she adds, " I play a writer - a very matured, sensible girl who's very clear about what she wants, be it the guy she likes or the relationships she wishes to be a part of. She has a clear idea of love and neither lives in a fantasy world nor has larger than life ideas. She is a deep soul. It's a romantic entertainer with plenty of humour but has an intense angle to it too. It's a space that not many films have delved into, for a long time."
Whereas in D Block, the thriller, she is cast as a college student. "It's a thriller based on real incidents, beautifully shot and will be an edge-of-the-seat experience for viewers. I can't wait to share it with people because it's literally the best work I've done so far. Playing the part was a challenge, especially because it gets very dark and intense but I had great support from my team because of which I was able to pull it off," Avantika shares.
What put her away from Telugu films for long? Pat comes the reply, "I had signed two Telugu films that were to be shot in 2020 and the pandemic hit us. Everything came to a grinding halt. I had already given my dates to the Tamil films whose shoot commenced earlier and I couldn't juggle my dates with the Telugu projects accordingly and had to give up on them. That's all there's to it. My upcoming Telugu film will make sure that the gap will be worth it. It's one of the most promising scripts I've heard in recent times."
The film world isn't certainly kind to failures and the jolt hits harder especially when one's young. Avantika remembers the words once her father told her, "One gets bitter when they start competing with others and gets better when they start competing with themselves. It's a mantra I abide by. As an actor, my job is to show up on the sets and do justice to what I'm given. The other factors, right from the reception to the release, are beyond my control. I don't regret going through those ups and downs in the early days of my career because it has made me a much better actor and a human being."
"I don't take criticism very personally because this has been a journey that has taught me a lot. Not many are aware of the struggles behind the screen. I'm grateful for all those experiences that have transformed me. When you take on characters, you draw so much from your experiences. I am much more secure now, happy to be doing what I get. Everyone has their own destiny and I hope the dots connect in the end. I am ready to take on different characters and do them well. I hope audiences are as excited as me when they watch it on screen."
The pandemic too played a part in her psychological transformation, where she took up organic farming, an experience that gave her the satisfaction of growing one's own food. "I also learnt many languages, dance. It was not an easy time for the world and for me as well, losing family members to the virus. The pandemic on the whole made me empathetic, kinder and I came out of it as a better human being. I couldn't stop thanking my stars that I was still able to find work, eight months after sitting at home."
No wonder Avantika feels like a newcomer all over again in 2021, with a renewed energy and zest to give it her everything in showbiz. "The pandemic was a detox of sorts and when I came out of it, I felt like a new person and that's when my new chapter also began. I've got several good offers in Tamil and I guess it had to work out this way. I am happy to be re-starting my career on a new slate in the Tamil industry with two good, promising movies. I have a better understanding of this world and I'm being picky. Going to the set should excite me. Otherwise, I don't think I can give my best to a character," she signs off.