“My mother has been ardently doing yoga and I do it with her. She was my tryst with Yoga” says Adah Sharma
Making her way into Bollywood with a successful horror movie “1920” back in 2008 when she was barely out of school, Adah Sharma (now 26) has sure won hearts with her charm and youthfulness. Here is a candid dialogue where she shares her experience of working in Bollywood, Telugu films and much more.
What is a day in the life of Adah Sharma like?
It’s a different day every day, depending on where I am. Wheather it’s a shoot day or not, I am staying at a hotel or home, what remains constant is that I wake up with an alarm. I am a light sleeper and as soon as my alarm rings I jump out of bed, brush my teeth, wash my face and drink water. If it’s a cold place then I do 10 handstands and a few backbends just to loosen up and then I begin to think of food!
In the initial stages of your career you were rejected a several times because of your curly hair, how did you feel and how did you cope up?
Not just because of curly hair…but I was rejected for strange reasons, like curly hair which can be straightened out in half in an hour! But then I used to see who got the role and wonder what! Why?! But there are so many things that have to fall in place for someone to be cast in a film. I got rejected for looking too Indian, not looking Indian in the span of the same week! I felt miserable as being rejected is never fun. But I am not someone to dwell in sadness. I move on quickly. It takes me a day sometimes.
You made your Hindi film debut in 1920, how has life changed after it?
I am very fortunate to have started with a movie like 1920 where I got to show the world that I am an able performer, also people saw that I was uninhibited in doing crazy stuff, for me quality is very important and I am happy that I have movies in my filmography that I am proud of 1920, Commando 2, Heartattack, Hasee Toh phasee, Rana Vikrama, Kshanam and many more to be added!
Are you scared of ghost stories? How was your experience shooting for a horror movie?
Well, I was the horror. I am not scared of ghosts, human beings are scary enough. I am not a very sociable person. People scare me a little. I hadn’t watched horror movies till I did 1920, then I watched a few and decided I will play this differently. Also, Vikram Bhatt was very sure he didn’t want to do the usual horror. He wanted it to be eerie. And sometimes an undertone of funny that it gets creepy, nervous laughter in a horror movie is something that makes people want to watch the movie again and again. I am proud to be part of a film that changed the horror genre in Hindi cinema.
There is an obvious comparison between Hindi & South Indian film industry, what is your take on this, which industry did you find better in terms of professionalism and otherwise?
Completely different depending on the director and what is take is on women, women in general and the character he has written for the girl (here being me) in the movie. I don’t think that has anything to do with south and north. I have played some very strong heroine roles in the south like my debut in Outi Jagannath’s Heartattack and my last Telugu film Kshanam (which was remade even in Hindi) if your director is a confused person the process gets frustrating. Be it in any language.
Several actresses of Bollywood have spoken on the “pay-disparity”, what is your opinion on this?
It’s a man driven world, that is slowwwwwly changing, very very very slowly. With more films being made with strong women characters and Films where the protagonist is a woman and those films doing well and people coming to watch them might help.
What is the importance of style in your life?
My style is my Adah! I am glad I’ve been able to create my own thing and not be an exact replica of someone else. I am happy to be setting trends like my ombre red hair, I like doing experiments and looking dramatically different. Style for me is having fun with it.
What kind of roles do you want to do in future?
I don’t want to repeat the same stuff I have done unless it takes me a step further
I am happy directors are writing and offering me a quirky and different type of roles.
How do you decide on a script?
Pure intuition…only… I have no sense of logic and reasoning. My intuition has been right 98.9 percent of the time!
What are your favorite things to splurge on?
Paints! I love paint shopping !!!
What’s your comfort food?
Rice and sambhar when I’m home…and pizza if I’m out because no one makes the kind of sambhar (not spicy) that my mum can.
How do you prepare yourself for a role?
I like working with directors who have this whole character sketch and then we can work together into putting life into the character. My best performances have been mostly from those roles… However, I have also worked on movies where my dialogues were written on set and my role was developed or chopped in front of my eyes. But there’s so much more one can do with preparation.
You were quoted in an interview once saying that you have watched movies one haven’t even heard of, even the terrible one…can you share about your movie mania (if we may call it so) and your favorite ones?
Hhahahahah I can’t !!! But trust me I have seen it all! I don’t really socialize or party so this is what I do when I’m alone…I learn up all the dialogues and then enact it for my friends the next day.
Tell us about your fitness regime?
I am a pure vegetarian, I don’t eat eggs either. There’s nothing more healthy than that. I do some form of physical exercises at least 5 times a week, stretching and flexibility and dance make an important part of my fitness regime. Also using my own body weight to weight train.
Name 5 things which are always in your bag?
A one litre bottle of water, sanitary napkins even when it’s not my time of the month in case it’s someone else’s I am a generous person, my tweezer, something to eat (khakras,kurmura), hopefully my house keys (which I usually forget ) an extra shirt (because I am always spilling stuff on myself ) my bag is a very large bag I don’t carry small bags and if you have spotted me with a small bag, the large one is in the car.
Tell us what are your current favorites in outfits?
It’s so hot so shorts and a tee, anything that isn’t synthetic material. I am usually very casually dressed unless it’s a red carpet thing or an event so very casual stuff, dresses, kurtas.
You are a trained kathak, jazz and salsa dancer, which dance form interests you the most?
Kathak does because it’s very expressive. I like subtle movements and expressions. It’s something that has to build a foundation for me to pick up other dance forms, like the footwork in Kathak and salsa are very similar.
One thing you cannot live without?
My tweezer … Just cannot!
You were also quoted saying that you wanted to be a writer, what was the inspiration behind this thought and why did you instead choose to be an actor?
Did I say that ?? I actually don’t remember. I must have been asked do u think u could be a writer and I said yes.bSometimes the questions asked can be leading, it’s like a question saying would u like to work with so and so actor and I say sure why not! And the headline the next day is I want to work with this actor! As far as writing I could have chosen that too but God knows what made me say I want to be an actor.
If you ever wrote a book, what would it be on?
Animal trivia or fiction I would love to write fiction, unusual photoshoot poses haha I have a lot of subjects!
How is Vidyut Jamwal on sets?
Hardworking, humorous, honest. I am happy to be working opposite him again in Commando 3.
What is the most adventurous thing you have ever done?
Decided to be an actress in the Hindi film industry after I completed school, with no contacts and no college education to fall back on.
Are you dating anyone? What are the qualities you desire that your partner must have?
I might be! Since we are putting this matrimonial ad out in your magazine if anyone applies I will let u know. He should like animals, pizza, me eating pizza. He shouldn’t have a fake accent, be kind to people who cannot do anything for him, be at least mildly intelligent, have a huge appetite for watching movies. That’s about it I guess.
Which actor would you happily do a love scene with?
It’s certainly not a very happy experience shooting anything intimate. I haven’t done love scenes yet. But I have kissed in a film. It’s usually climatically hot, hair is covering the exact part of your face that needs to be visible, you have to make sure you are positioning your face and his face at the perfect angle and make it look nice, also people watching isn’t something that excites me. But making movies does, so I think I would treat it like a complicated dance choreography and happily do the scene with anyone. If he doesn’t have bad breath would be great!
Recently when you shared a picture of yours in a bikini on social media, people reacted in different ways, some complimented you, some posted vulgar comments, do you get affected by all this?
I am one of those who prefers to look at the bright side first and the pictures got me a lot of compliments especially the one where I am hanging off the ropes, it was especially hard on a ship that was moving mid-ocean, but lots of fun. I always try to do something different with my pictures. I am glad people like me being me, doing crazy stuff. It is human nature to bring down someone to feel better about one’s self, so yes there will always be people who will say something nasty. Also on social media, it’s easy to do that as I can’t see the person who is saying it. I am one of the luckiest actresses with this awesome fan support do everytime someone writes a vulgar comment there will be 10 people attacking them.
Tell us about your forthcoming projects?
Commando 3 begins soon. I play the same character of Bhavana Reddy as I did in part 2. I’ve just shot a film in Hindi and English where I play a double role, it’s called Soulmate. I am making my Tamil debut opposite Prabhu Deva in Charlie Chaplin 2. There are more Hindi Tamil and Telugu projects happening too!
Since yoga day falls in June, please share your association with yoga. Has it been long? Do you daily practice yoga and meditation?
My mother has been doing yoga since I was a child, I do yoga with her. Before and after I begin any workout I do Surya namaskars as my warm up and cool down.. Yoga can be done anywhere, even in a hotel room when traveling so I do it often. Meditation for me is when I paint!