THE LUNCHBOX made for a delectable treat but her journey over the past 9 years was no piece of cake… Nimrat Kaur shares nuggets of the same with Shubarna Mukerji Shu.
It took 9 years to be here, but then there are many people in this country who want to be actors; the struggle is inevitable. After all, there are few professions that make you immortal! Frankly, I don’t know who my grandfather’s physician was, but I know that Dilip Kumar was his favourite actor! That’s the beauty of this profession. Recently at an awards function, I was backstage and suddenly found myself face to face with Mr. Amitabh Bachchan. I froze. It was like everything else paused. I didn’t know what to say… To add to it, he addressed me by my name! I cannot tell you how I felt.
Being a girl, it was not easy to decide to come to Mumbai, given the things one hears about the industry. I was told that girls get propositioned all the time… I am not saying that it is not true, but it never happened to me. People are very smart out here, they sense desperation and manipulate their way around that. I might be many things but I was never desperate. I never cried my eyes out wondering where my next paycheck would come from, whether I will be able to buy that swanky house, get myself a new car… I think people sense that in me. I am not here to bullshit!
The first couple of years here I went without a car. I remember taking a train for my first audition, at Famous Studios. Now anyone who has ever travelled in a Mumbai local knows how things get. By the time I got off, my hair was not in place, neither was my make-up anything like it was supposed to look! And then of course, the famous Mumbai rains… Once I was walking towards a studio when a car splashed water all over me. I just turned around and walked back home. I realised I couldn’t turn up at auditions not looking my best so I had to invest in a car.
I enjoyed watching movies while growing up, but I never gave it a thought that slow motion might not actually be shot in slow-mo! I remember shooting for this hair oil commercial and wondering why a guy, who was not my hair person, was standing around with a hairdryer. When they started shooting I was like, ‘Oh, it’s because there is no natural wind in the studios while the shot is taken!’ Other than these silly ones, many myths were broken over the years that I have been here. When I started off, I did a music video. Deepika Padukone and Vidya Balan too had starred in music videos and I was sure that I was on the right track: first stop, music videos; second, OM SHANTI OM or PARINEETA! It obviously didn’t work like that!
It was not easy. To begin with, even when I was 22, people were convinced I was at least 25. They said it was because of my sharp nose and long face. People with round faces and round eyes look younger, they said.
I could not suddenly develop a round face! I had to make do with what I had! Funnily enough, people told me that I wouldn’t be able to pull off a simple housewife kind of character because I looked too urbane. I guess I took that criticism to heart!
Photography: Ishaan Nair
Art Director: Nirali Dedhia
Make up & hair : Elton fernandez
Stylist: Kushal Parmanand
Location Courtesy: Bonobo
Ensemble from Max Holiday Shop Collection