The Pratik Gandhi starrer is set to release on October 1.
Aindrita Ray was the leading lady of one of the biggest Kannada film hits of 2013 – the Shivarajkumar-starrer Bhajarangi. Yet for reasons she cannot fathom, the film offers tapered down. “I honestly don’t know why, but I suddenly went from doing four films a year, to maybe one or two, at the most. I tried wrapping my head around it and thought that it was perhaps everyone in the industry knew about my relationship status with Diganth. I was surprised by the turn of events, but also confused as to why. But then, I have never been the kind of person to chase work; I’ve been rather laidback and content with what I have in my personal life. I was adventurous, but never an outdoorsy person, because I had a history of asthma. Shooting in extreme conditions over the years toughened me, but Diganth really changed things around I picked up cycling, rock climbing, surfing, and deep-sea diving, among others, which kept me occupied and happy, both physically and mentally,” she says, adding, “The dull professional phase taught me a lot, but instead of brooding I just told myself that I need to invest that time in learning something new. There’s so much more to life than just doing movies, which you need to enjoy while you can.
Right now, Aindrita is counting down to the release of her Hindi film, Bhavai, in which she is paired with Pratik Gandhi. “I got lucky with this film; I was in Mumbai at the right time to audition for it. It happened when I was just chilling with Diganth in Mumbai. After I auditioned for it, my Hindi accent, which has a Kannada and Bengali influence was an issue, and I had to undergo tedious training for a couple of weeks to overcome it and improve my vocabulary, as I have dubbed for myself in the film. At that point, Scam 1992 had not released, but he was a very popular Gujarati film and theatre actor. In fact, most of the other actors on board Bhavai are also theatre artistes and I had to level up to them. I even underwent a proper acting training with the team, under the tutelage of Hemant Kher, who played Pratik’s brother in Scam 1992. To actually get a role like this, which gave me a lot of scope to perform, is great for a first break in a different industry. My character plays Sita on stage, for which I needed a certain body language and off it, she is a completely different girl, very bubbly, and a struggling actor. It was amazing doing this film, but with theatres still shut in Mumbai, I really don’t know how the release is going to be,” she says, adding, “I am really proud of this film.”
The biggest selling point for Bhavai was the script, explains Aindrita. “I was blown away when I heard the script. It was so descriptive and now when I see rushes from the film, it is exactly as I had imagined it. The story revolves around a Nautanki company in the 80s that goes around Gujarat to perform Ramleela. We shot in a small town in Gujarat, and everything had to be changed to suit the 80s style. It is a cute love story between the girl who plays Sita on stage and the guy who is Raavan. It has nothing to do with mythology, but I think audiences misinterpreted it when they saw the trailer and heard Ram, Sita and Raavan together. People have become so intolerant that the team had to eventually change the film’s title from its initial Raavan-Leela to Bhavai. We even had to remove the last line from the trailer because people thought it was an affront to Ram. In fact, it was the line that most people here, like Rakshit Shetty, director Senna Hegde, etc., found most interesting,” she says. The new title, she adds, also suits the narrative beautifully. “If I am not mistaken, it means performing on stage, but can also refer to chaos and our love story in the film does get a little chaotic,” she signs off.