The actor talks about her transformation from a girl to a tom boy, her closest friends off-screen, working with the Vadola father-son Jodi and more
Aneri Vajani who plays the favourite cousin Nisha on Nisha Aur Uske Cousins seems to have changed her real life persona after her onscreen avatar. The first thing she did when she met me was to sit on the floor comfortably without a care in the world. She was in character – spontaneous, wild, bindass. Read excerpts from the interview...
Your co-stars complain that you have too much of energy - something they can't compete with. How do you keep up your energy even after 12-14 hours of shoot?
I swear I have no clue where do I get it from. Acting is the only thing I love doing. The moment the director says action I become another person. And I am another person once he says pack-up. After the shoot I need the energy booster - let's go party or go somewhere to eat. And I love eating pasta, in fact there have been times I have had pasta for breakfast as well.
Among all the seven of your onscreen cousins, who are you closest to off screen?
Off screen I am very close to Meherzaan and Heli. The day they don't come for shoot it's the most depressing day for me, because I do not know what to do. I shoot from 8:30 am till somewhere between 11 pm to 1 pm. I need an energy booster. Considering I am there in all the scenes, I don't get a break. If they are there in the scene, there is a level of comfort and I know I can manage. The day they are not there, I am the crankiest person on the set and I keep shouting at everybody.
How was it working under Varun Badola's direction?
Varun Badola is something else. He is the only director I know, who will not mind or yell no matter how many retakes you take. He is patient from the first take to the 50th take - neither his expressions nor does his reaction change. That's what we love about him. He will tell you exactly how to do a scene and if you manage to get it right he's the happiest person on the set that day. Rahib Siddiqui is always there to help and encourage. Like when I shot for my first episode, I fainted; it was 50 degrees in Jaipur and considering how healthy I am - that was bound to happen. I had to run from here to there. Rahib is also a gem of a person and I am glad they are both directing the show.
How is it shooting with Varun Badola's father VM Badola?
Dadaji is just awesome. He is about 78 but that energy in him is something else. I have a very beautiful scene with him and he scolded me too because he wanted that scene to come out well. After that, the scene turned out so beautiful. I am really glad and happy that I am shooting with the son and the father.
How similar or different are you from your onscreen character?
When they called me for the audition I just didn't go. I was ignoring them because I never believed I could do the role. Then the creative head of the show called me and I had to go the moment I got the call; she's like a mentor to me. When I did enact the part it came out very okay, but they called me for a look test. I asked them if they are sure they wanted to invest that much money on me? But we did a lot of workshops and then to transform to a tom boy took time. But now I've become like that, in fact, on the sets also no one calls me Nisha, they call me bhai. It has been a big challenge.
Are you still in touch with the star cast of Crazy Stupid Ishq?
I am very close to Harsh Rajput and Vishal Vashishtha, who is playing Baldev in Veera. I watch the show only for him. We are like the closest buddies. Heeba is not in touch because she keeps travelling to Bareli - her hometown. We still meet and chill out together.
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