Nushrat Bharucha

NUSHRAT BHARUCHA TALKS FILMS AND HER FLOURISHING CAREER

by ASJAD NAZIR

LAST year Nushrat Bharucha lit up the big screen in sleeper super-hit Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety and has since become a heavily in-demand actress with interesting projects on the way.

The trailer for her new film Dream Girl has received a rip-roaring response and looks like being another big winner for the talented actress.

She stars opposite hot right now star Ayushmann Khurrana in the comedy revolving around a struggling actor working at a call centre pretending to be a woman and unexpectedly having men falling in love with him.

Nushrat plays his love interest in the film and was feeling confident when Eastern Eye caught up with her to talk about Dream Girl, future hopes, inspirations and more…

How has life been since Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety clocked up hu-ge numbers at the box office?
Life has been very busy since my last film did the numbers it did. I don’t think I have even had one to two days alone to do nothing or just catch up on some reading. That is a good thing! I think every actor strives to be in a situation where they are constantly working. So I’m having a blast and don’t think I would even remotely hope for a day off. I’m happy shooting and working every day.

Did the way you selected films change after that success?
I know that success can changes your selection process because there is an added pressure to live up to that success. But pressure is something you create in your own mind and sometimes it works I guess because you are able to take decisions more carefully.
I believe art and creativity can’t be thought out that much. I think it is something intrinsic you put out there. So it’s very instinctive for me when selecting films. If I hear a good story which speaks to me, I have to be part of it and don’t think about previous successes.

What did you like about Dream Girl?
It is a very relatable concept because we have all seen those ‘call a friend’ or ‘talk to her’ number adverts all around us, but don’t notice this is also a story. That is so amazing about certain stories that they are simple and right in front of you, but you don’t see it as such.
This is a simple concept of a guy who doesn’t have a job, but can speak in a girl’s voice and gets a job in a space where these girls talk to men and give them company. When someone sees that as a story and wants to put it out there, I just jumped at it. The writing is very funny and it’s a laugh riot from beginning to end. The situations are so comical. So I chose it for the story and thought I want to be part of it.

Tell us about your character in the film?
Ayushmann is the dream girl (of the title), but I am his dream girl in the film and play his love interest. Somewhere our relationship gets stuck in this mess with him and find out he is also Pooja. So it’s funny! I play a girl from a small town, who has very forward notions of life. She thinks different, is in your face and tells you like it is. She is a girl next door who loves being the homemaker and having a family. It’s a nice sweet romantic story we have.

What is Ayushmann like to work with?
He is great! It is just so much fun to be in that entire group. Ayushmann has a great sense of humour and cracks some ridiculous jokes. You think how is that funny, but still laugh because it is. He is so endearing on-screen and so natural. It is a delight watching him work.

What is your favourite moment in the movie?
The songs. I love shooting songs. Expressing something in lyrics and music is just so me. I enjoy every moment of that world. Every montage we have shot of the love song and every dance step we’ve done is my favourite and brings me to life.

Is comedy a genre you are now most comfortable in?
I don’t think that an act-or should mentally restrict themselves to a particular genre.
I can’t do that because I feel like every genre challenges you in some way and genre names are just given to simplify things. It’s just about what you enjoy doing. If you don’t have fun doing something, don’t do it. But I try to do different things. I try doing every kind of film in terms of story to see how differently I can do certain things.

You must like it as an actor that subjects like Dream Girl are being made?
This is a great space for the film industry because there are very different concepts and content being written and produced. I am thankful that when these do well, it gives a boost to other filmmakers to take that risk and make content-driven films. Audiences want to see different things! They have aged in a way where now something different keeps them intrigued and gripped in the story, which is a better selling point than the old way of making films with a large scale and similar stories, and glam quotient. I think we have grown out of that phase. Audiences have become that much smarter, so you have to smarten up as actors and filmmakers.

Which current or past legend do you think is the ultimate dream girl?
There is only one dream girl and that is definitely Hema Malini jee. I think it’s great that in our film the dream girl is a boy because no other girl would do justice to it, unless Hema did it again.

What other big films do you have on the way?
I have a film called Turram Khan opposite Rajkummar Rao and directed by Hansal Mehta. That is also a very different film and strong on content. It’s a small town relatable very sweet story. I am really looking forward to that and how audiences react to it.
Then I have the 1990s-set Hurdang that is about the Mandal commission that touches on a subject still relevant today. (The reservation policy for ‘other backward classes’ in education and work that still exists today). It touches on that subject and subtly talks about it in a love story set in the 1990s.

What is the master plan going forward?
I have no clue! I have never planned anything in my career and don’t think I can because in the film industry any Friday can make or break you. You can be at the top today and at the bottom tomorrow. It’s too unpredictable! So I don’t think anyone can have a plan and say if you follow this, it will be a way forward. I think everyone decides with what they have and can hope for in the future, and you do your best.

Can you see yourself working in the west or the webspace?
Yes, of course, why not? The web is a great space and the west is a great market. If something came up I would love to give it my all and see how audiences react. I like to see what people think of the work I’m putting out there, so it would be a good thing to do if it came my way.

Do you have a dream role?
I wish I could do something as challenging as Black Swan, Gone Girl or Inception. It makes my mind go to such places where I think, how did they think of this writing, shooting and executing it like this? It could even be a simple story, but told so well that it hits the right chord like Bird Man. I wish I could go into these spaces and people could write stuff that could challenge me on that level.

Who would you love to work with?
I would love to work with anybody who would love to work with me. I think if you have that equal excitement both ways, it is a different magic and a great vibe where you take off this energy from each other. You do things that can’t be put into words. So it has always been my modus operandi that if someone wants to work with me, I am happy to work with them.

What kind of movies do you enjoy?
I’m a full movie buff and enjoy any sort. I love watching horrors, even though I get really scared. I completely enjoy thrillers. But I watch everything and can’t put it in genres. They don’t exist in genres for me, they are just stories, and there are great stories out there. I like to watch it all to see what this person was trying say and make.

What are your biggest passions away from work?
My work. I don’t think I would have anything away from this because genuinely this is my biggest passion.

What inspires you?
The one thing that really inspires me is to watch another actor do a great job or a great performance. It makes me feel certain emotions and then I have to get my audiences to feel this emotion when I’m performing on-screen. That inspires me, which is why I like watching all films because you never know when a performance will hit you like that. That keeps me going.

Why should we watch Dream Girl?
Because it is a fun comedy ride! It will keep you laughing from the beginning to the end. There are some great performances and some great moments. You will enjoy it. It will be worth every penny you spend on it, so yippee, watch it!

Dream Girl is in cinemas now