“PR is not the key to success” – Sada

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She’s perhaps someone whom you can describe as the ‘dark horse’ of the tribe because her formula to success is rather different. Despite being quite a well known name down South, Sada prefers to remain quiet and focused. She chooses to emerge from the crowd solely on the basis of her talent and nothing else. She’s staying low and waiting to grasp all the opportunities she gets, the latest of these opportunities being Sangeeth Sivan’s thriller of the season, Click! Along with Shreyas Talpade and Sneha Ullal, Sada is coming to a cinema near you this Friday to give an edge of the seat thriller, but before she gets lost in the crowd of applause and appreciation that surely will come her way post Friday, she caught up with us to tell us exactly what makes Sada Click!

Prathna: Firstly and fore mostly tell us a bit about the story of Click?

Sada: Click is a supernatural thriller. It’s basically about this couple who all of a sudden starts facing trouble in their life because of what Shreyas’s character has gone through in the past. So basically they encounter things in their present because of what has happened in the past. It’s about this couple and how they face this hardship in their life. Quite an interesting story and how they finally come out of it or don’t come out of it is something for audiences to find out.

Prathna: So how did you become a part of Click?

Sada: Sangeeth-ji [Sangeeth Sivan] had seen me in my South Indian films. So he approached me for the film. After going through the narration I really felt that it was something that would give me good scope to perform and would bring out the best from me so I decided that I should definitely go ahead with the film.

Prathna: Now tell us a me about your role in the film?

Sada: I play Sonia. Sonia is basically a model. Shreya’s the photographer. They’re a couple in a live-in relationship. Sonia is a very caring person. She’s someone who is there for her boyfriend all throughout his difficult times. She’s very sensible. She can’t see her guy in trouble so she’s ready to fight no matter what it is or despite the fact if he’s right or wrong. She makes sure she’s there till the end.

Prathna: Did you find that you related to Sonia’s character in any way?

Sada: Umm..no [laughs]. Not that I wouldn’t be a good girlfriend or anything like that but I’ve never got to experience such situations that Sonia experiences in my real life. I really don’t know whether her reactions would be mine or not. But yeah I guess some things do match like the fact that we’re both kind hearted, etc. I truly had to work very hard when it came to this character because firstly she’s a model and I’m an actress, two very different professions. Secondly, it’s a supernatural thriller so most of the time we were imagining things not present in front of us.

Prathna: Speaking of challenges, was there any preparation you did to get ready for such a role and this genre?

Sada: No not really. Preparation in terms of looks of the character was something Sangeeth-ji was very clear about what he wanted. From my clothes to my hairstyle, he had it all figured out and was adamant for me to not appear the way I have appeared in my other films. So he was very keen on that so the designers and him put in a lot of effort in preparing the look of the character. Apart from that when it came to preparing for the character as in the work I don’t think we did anything specifically. It was whatever came to us spontaneously. Shreyas also is a very spontaneous actor. We got into a pattern of some sort, we’d come on the sets and learnt the dialogues and reacted the most natural way possible. And that was what worked best for the film because even the chemistry doesn’t look created but more natural.

Prathna: How was your experience of working with Sangeeth Sivan?

Sada: A very senior technician and a wonderful guy to work with. I thought he would be pretty strict for the first two days but I think once we started working on the film it was completely fun. Totally opposite to the feel of the film which is serious but while working it was maddening fun. We had so much fun. A wonderful experience. The entire team Sangeeth-ji has got is crazy! It was nice to have so much fun on sets because when we were doing a scene we used to get drained out due to the emotions, and the camera rolls off and you truly needed that light atmosphere that was around you. It maintained the balance.

Prathna: And how was it working with Shreyas who of course is a very acclaimed actor?

Sada: I think everyone knows that Shreyas is a wonderful actor but what I especially came to know was that he was a very spontaneous actor. He doesn’t go through too much of preparation before shooting for anything. He comes very raw. He does things very naturally which is helpful to the co-actor because when you rehearse something too many times you come to anticipate the person’s reaction way before time and you plan ahead your reaction and this gets into a pattern and quite a bit mechanical. But with Shreyas it wasn’t like this at all because he would come out with some many spontaneous actions and reactions that in a way reacting to those little moments added a lot to those particular scenes. So that would have to be the best thing about working with Shreyas. Apart from that, he’s a very fun loving person unlike his onscreen images which tend to be very serious apart from those comic roles. He is more like the characters he does in his comedy films. A very funny person. Considering that our characters are in a live-in relationship in the film, you had to know each other really well. On the first day of shooting was the first time we met so developing that chemistry for character in this situation was definitely not an easy task because couples develop that chemistry over a given period of time. But thanks to him it all went well despite only meeting him 30 minutes before the shot. The way he interacted never made me feel like I was meeting him for the first time.

Prathna: So, any memorable moment from the sets?

Sada: Um…I think the entire shoot of Click is something I’ll definitely cherish. But one particular scene, an important horror scene in the film, was shot after a very tiring day because the scene is rather intense with screams and screeches etc… so that is something I won’t forget because I was so exhausted at the end of that sequence and realized my voice had completely gone. So it was one scene I had to really work hard for and it has come out really well, I think!

Prathna: 2009 was a very quiet year for you even for your South films, was this intentional?

Sada: Well in 2009, I didn’t want to do a lot of films. There had been a lot of offers but I wasn’t interested in a small scaled film. I didn’t want to do a film that wouldn’t tap into my potential, to my satisfaction. So I didn’t want to hurry it all up but preferred just waiting for everyone to see my work and then give me roles that I actually would be interested in. It’s also the reason why I haven’t accepted any new projects in Hindi because I feel the wait will be worth it.

Prathna: Definitely it’ll be worth it! So you next couple of films will they be down South since you’re not accepting any in Hindi right now?

Sada: Again, even down South, it depends on the film. I will only accept roles similar to the scale of my roles in the past or something bigger. There is this misconception out there that Sada has quit South Indian films and many are not approaching me because of this rumor. So once and for all I’ll clear it here that no, I am not quitting South Indian cinema and definitely would love to continue doing regional films, however it all depends on my availability and the roles.

Prathna: Speaking of South cinema, I myself extensively watch regional cinema and often find that importance is given more to the male leads. Do you think that is the case?

Sada: Yes it is true. Hence why if you see from my very first film you’ll see that I have only picked roles that have given scope to the female lead apart from one or two commercial films that I wanted to do for the sake of it. Even Aparchit, which had great personalities like Vikram and Shankar associated in it, it still gave me enough scope. I have tried to do films that have given me equal importance, if not more. I have done a couple of films where you’re only there for four or five romantic scenes and songs and the rest of the film is carried on the hero’s shoulders, but when I look back at these roles I feel like I have been totally wasted. Which is why I have decided if I am satisfied with the film on the script level, only then will I go forward with it.

Prathna: Do you see this trend of male dominated films changing in South cinema in the future? Hindi cinema once was much like that but had evolved of course.

Sada: It is changing I think. There are all kinds of film makers. Largely it is a male dominated industry but there are certain directors that make beautiful love stories where the female leads are given scope. So I think less and more scope giving roles are part of the profession and it’s all up to you how you choose your films. You can’t change the industry. But having said that, Hindi cinema has evolved to have films like Black where the female lead is the main protagonist, so I guess we’ll have to wait to see that happen down South.

Prathna: How do you feel you career is going so far in Hindi films?

Sada: I don’t think it has started. Not even the beginning. I am sure once I get recognized things are going to be very different. The doors haven’t opened yet!

Prathna: Now you’ve had two releases so far, Khalbali and Love Khichidi

Sada: Actually, Khalabali never released! Unfortunately it didn’t. The terror attacks happened week before the release and it was the producers call to not release the film in the grim and dark atmosphere. After that died down, the production had some financial crisis so I think after that the film went for an unlimited delay! [laughs]

Prathna: What about Love Khichidi? Were you satisfied with that one?

Sada: The way the film was promoted was something very disappointing. It wasn’t given the promotion it needed. It was released with six other films which was a bad choice. Whoever though saw the film liked the film and me, but it didn’t reach the audience like it should have.

Prathna: I myself thought the film had a very unique style and you managed to get quite a lot of scope despite the fact that the film had many heroines.

Sada: Yes, my character was the main character after Randeep in the film. I wouldn’t have done the film if it hadn’t given me that scope. Many people asked me why I am doing the film, I said see the film and you’ll know because my reason for doing the film obviously wasn’t shown in the posters, etc. But unfortunately because of weak promotion, it wasn’t seen by many people.

Prathna: So how has the shift been into Bollywood, have you interacted with many people here yet?

Sada: No I haven’t interacted much because I am not an outgoing person whom you’ll spot at parties and events. I don’t think that’s how you get work. People say PR is your key to get work but I don’t think that works. Which is why I haven’t made much friends. I only know the people I have worked with. Once I start doing more work I’ll make friends, I am sure.

Prathna: What else have you planned for 2010?

Sada: As of now it’s just Click, but I will definitely be signing more films in the coming month.

Prathna: Why should our readers be rushing to a cinema near them to catch Click? What would you say the film’s USP is?

Sada: The film’s USP is definitely that it’s an edge of the seat thriller. I think there is a large segment of the audience who love to watch horror films, even though I am not part of that group. I can’t watch horror alone or with anyone else! But unlike me, many others exist who love this genre, and for them I think the film will be perfect!

So fans of the genre be prepared for an out and out thriller that has promised to blow you away! Be sure to catch Click in cinema this Friday the 19th!

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