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Interview: Filming October was like coming back to home & a Family

Comments  Comments [ 0 ]    By Preksha Jain | 10 April 2018 | 4:38pm




We recently interacted with a very promising debutant Banita Sandhu who will mark her debut in Shoojit Sircar's film 'October'. Her experience with Varun and Shoojit, her perception of Bollywood, the film journey and much more is all that we took from this interview. 

Q. You seemed a little nervous at the trailer launch but ever since that event we've seen you bit more relaxed and at ease. How did this change happen?

Banita: Now I feel a lot more comfortable. The reason I was nervous at the launch is that I'd never faced press before. But, after interacting with the press for a time now, I am a lot more comfortable.

Q. October is your second collaboration with director Shoojit Sircar so was there any pressure when he offered you a film?

Banita: In terms of pressure, I honestly didn't feel any and I didn't feel stressed about this film as I knew I was in such safe hands. A lot of people ask that you are going to debut with Varun and Shoojit sir and that of course, you have expectations to live up to so there will be so much pressure. But it is actually quite the opposite. Because I know I'm working with two such great and talented people in the industry. I felt very protected and secured in the filming process that we did. And also I have worked with Shoojit sir before for an ad film so I know how he works and that's the kind of working style I've dreamt of doing since I was a child. Starting October honestly was like coming back to home and a family and wasn't nervous.

Q. How was your experience while working with co-star Varun Dhawan?

Banita: Varun he is the best first co-star I could ever ask for. I'm not saying this because of his fan-following or because of his box office success but he is just a genuinely nice person. And the journey that we've been through together as obviously it's my first film and with him also it's very much his first film because Shoojit sir calls October his debut film as the side that you will see to him is not Varun Dhawan but Dan (His character from the film). You will be shocked when you will see his performance in this film. For both of us, it was very much a spiritual journey and to have someone to relate to on that level I couldn't have asked for a better co-star than him. In my head, no one could play Dan better than Varun.

Q. Varun had said that he was very protective of you given that October was your debut film. Was it a very protective environment for you, was it easy? How has the process been for you?

Banita: It was never difficult, I definitely felt protected, and in fact, I still feel protected. You know when I was back home in London and doing interviews, the only question I kept getting asked was how is Bollywood, who have you met, how were the glitz and glamour. I was just like I still don't feel that I'm a part of Bollywood, I'm just part of Shoojit Sircar's film which is so far from all that glitz and glam. I don't do all that Bollywood norms and stuff so I feel protected from that.




Q. What was your perception of Bollywood and has it changed now or it's still the same?

Banita: Honestly, it has changed a lot since I've come to India. Bollywood does have conversations with singing, dance, glitz and glam especially and that is very much the view outside. When I finally came to India, my friends were giving me film suggestions. So I watched Shoojit's film, Udta Punjab and Dangal I actually was shocked that there was such good content. Because to be honest, I had a very preconceived notion which absolutely got demolished because of filmmakers like Shoojit and that's why I was so on board to do this film because I think what he is doing for this industry is absolutely amazing.

Q. Every film comes with its own challenges, with October as an actor what challenges did you face?

Banita: For me connecting to the character of Shiuli (her character from the film) at first was difficult. She is a much better person that I am. I was given Shiuli at a time of my life when I had a lot of choices to be made and a lot was going on in my life. So when Shoojit gave me Shiuli he told me you need to calm down and slow down to play her. And with that came in a lot of meditation and a lot of work.

Q. Were you under that pressure that you have to be at par with an actor who hasn't given a flop till date and a director whose films are such well received?

Banita: As I said before, I felt very safe because I was working with both of them. If I would've been working with a first-time director perhaps I would feel a pressure but I had trust and I knew that both of these amazing people would do a good job and make me do a good job. So there was no pressure of that sort.

Banita's debut film 'October' is slated to release on 13th April 2018. 

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