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Mother’s Day 2023: ‘As a mom, I resonated the most with my Badhaai Do character,’ says Sheeba Chadha | Exclusive

In Badhaai Do, the award-winning actress played Mrs Baby Thakur - the mother of Shardul Thakur, played by Rajkummar Rao

Mother’s Day 2023: ‘As a mom, I resonated the most with my Badhaai Do character,’ says Sheeba Chadha | Exclusive

Sheeba Chadha as Baby in Harshavardhan Kulkarni’s 2022 film Badhaai Do

  • Reema Gowalla

Last Updated: 04.18 AM, May 14, 2023

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Easily one of the most affable yet hatke onscreen mothers in Bollywood today, acclaimed actress Sheeba Chadha needs no introduction. From Hamida in Gully Boy, Mrs Baby Thakur in Badhaai Do to Shobha Gupta in Doctor G, she has redefined the role of a mother with every portrayal on screen. But did you know, Sheeba is also a doting mother to daughter, Noor? And the mommy-dotty duo loves spending time with each other - be it pulling off movie marathons at home or going on long drives. 

This Mother’s Day, OTTplay caught up with the award-winning actress to understand more about being a mother, both in reel and real life - what she has to say about the gradual evolution of the onscreen mothers in Hindi cinema, the bond she shares with Noor and more. Excerpts:     

Q. Your take on how onscreen mothers in Hindi cinema have evolved over time…

A. The onscreen mothers in Hindi cinema are more nuanced now. You get to see more interesting and real mothers in films. The pitches are also real; the kind of mothers, I think, we grew up with or we see around us now. It’s great to have mothers who have a space of their own, as opposed to being only a mother to someone. There is more scope given in accordance to the character and role now, which is great.

Q. Your onscreen mother characters - be it in Badhaai Do, Gully Boy or Doctor G - that you resonated with even on a personal level?

A. I think, the onscreen character of a mother that I resonated a lot with is the one I played in Badhaai Do [as Mrs Baby Thakur - Shardul Thakur’s (played by Rajkummar Rao) mother], in the sense of an unconditional acceptance of my child. I think that part of Baby’s character is very special to me. Despite her being a fairly simple person, her unconditional acceptance of her child’s reality is what drew me toward her.

Q. Tell us about the rapport that you share with your daughter..

A. I would like to think that I share a pretty good rapport with my daughter. I am a single mother, and I think we’re quite close. Even though she’s already 17 now, I think there’s quite a lot of connection and communication that we have. At least, I’d like to think so. Yeah, I think we’re very connected. Sometimes, maybe, a little too much from her point of view. But for me, it’s like… Oh, bring on more!

Q. Any favourite film/series that you like to watch with your daughter?

A. Yeah, we watch quite a few series together. Together, we love to watch The Big Bang Theory, Friends, Modern Family and The Office. So, these are our all-time favourite series that we keep going back to, just to watch them together. Another favourite is Brooklyn Nine-Nine. That’s more of her favourite than mine, but I’ll still watch it with her, just so I get to hang with her a little more.

Q. Does your relationship with your daughter remind you of the bond you shared with your mother?

A. No, my bond with my mother was very different from mine and my daughter’s. I did not have a very communicative relationship with my mother. There was extreme love and a great bond, but not very communicative. And that was me, I wasn’t very communicative. But I don’t think that’s the case between my daughter and me. I do feel she’s quite communicative. Well, as much as you can expect of a child in their teens. 

Q. Any activity at home that you like to do together with your daughter?

A. Yeah, we do like to watch stuff together. That is a fact. And I think that would be our favourite activity. Earlier, it used to be a lot of painting and drawing. We used to do those a lot together. Now, we also like to go for drives together. That’s something that she loves, which I have found out quite late. And then, sometimes, we just order in some junk food and watch stuff.

Q. A dish that you cook which your daughter simply loves?

A. I am not what you call ‘a mother who cooks’, really. And my daughter has a fairly evolved palate, so I don’t quite reach up to that mark. I used to cook pasta a lot for her earlier, which I thought she liked, until she told me later that she doesn’t. So, yeah, I can’t say that I am like the mum who has one dish that my daughter loves. I actually can’t say it, and so I have to make my peace with that.

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