Great talent knows no bounds- a fact which Aditi Singh strongly believes in. Hailing from the other side of the border, she will be debuting in her first Pakistani film in ‘Wajood.’ Social Diary presents an exclusive interview with the enigmatic Aditi…
- Who is Aditi? Tell us about yourself- where you hail from, your background, education, lifestyle etc.
I am this girl who has always dreamed of becoming an actress since childhood. I hail from Mumbai and I was born in Delhi. My family background is completely filmy- with me being the third generation of people in the industry of films. First was my grandfather who made a lot of films and lived in Lahore, second was my father who made a lot of films with Amir Khan and Madhuri Dixit and also my uncle who is a very famous actor in Bollywood- Aditya Pancholi, he has done a lot of remarkable work there.
- How did you step into the field of entertainment? Was it something you had always wanted to pursue?
I stepped into the field of entertainment before I even learned how to walk because my entire family was from the film industry and everything we ever spoke about, revolved around the industry. I wanted to become an actress since I was a child and even when I was growing there was nothing I ever thought I would do except acting and that choice has never changed. It was something I had always wanted to pursue and my parents have been very supportive in this journey of mine.
- How were you discovered and approached for working in the film Wajood?
I was approached for Wajood when Sir Sheikh was in Mumbai promoting Happy Bhaag Jaye gi so somehow he had come across my photographs and he apparently thought I am perfect for the role. So there was a meeting held; me and my mother had went to meet him and once we heard the script and I heard the song that is mine in this film- there was no looking back.
- What is the thought process behind the roles you choose and which scripts are you more partial towards?
My thought process behind the roles I choose is basically I see how impactful that role is and challenging. Because my mindset is set in always wanting to do something different, giving my role more of a personal touch so that I can bring something new to the screen with my character every time. What makes me partial towards the script is basically how impactful my role is in the film so if I feel that in a script my character is very important and pivotal in the film, then I will always be partial towards the script.
- What convinced you to accept a role in WAJOOD?
The role of Jessica Fernandez that Sir Sheikh narrated to me- It was impossible for me to not want to do this role as it is the oxygen of Wajood- it is the living, breathing organism of the film which is Jessica Fernandez. Once I heard the role, I wouldn’t want to do any other role in the film apart from Jessica.
- In your opinion, what makes or breaks a film? Is a good cast enough to sustain a film’s success?
In my opinion, what makes or breaks a film is how proportionately the content is laid out- for example how much entertainment is for the masses how much entertainment is for the classes, and for movie buffs. This mixture makes the film and if it is all over the place, it breaks a film. So I think this is what does the job and a good cast is of course important because they are the ones who attract the audience to the cinema but what sustains the film is completely the right mixture of entertainment.
- How have you been preparing for your character in WAJOOD?
Sir Sheikh has been the main rock for me while preparing for my character in Wajood- funnily his name also the Rock in the film, actually. But all I did before every shot I gave was that I told myself that you are a millionaire a billionaire and you have to walk like the world is walking behind you and I think this would help me get into the character in a minute.
- Additional to Lollywood, you originally worked in Telugu films. How would you say Pakistan’s film industry is different in comparison?
I honestly don’t believe that there is any difference in the filmmaking. It is uniform around the world; what differs in every situation is the person you are working with. Every person has a different style- like I have worked with different people in Telegu and now I worked with Sir Sheikh; it is different because Sir Sheikh has a lot more royal approach to his filmmaking techniques- the location, the clothes etc.
- Aditi, we certainly hope the transition to Lollywood has been easy. Have you received any backlash on social media for it? If yes, how have you been coping with it?
Yes the transition to Lollywood has been easy but yes I have been receiving a lot of backlash on social media. Honestly it is not about coping with it but conditioning my mind (which my mom has been helping me a lot with) because I was chosen for this script because Sir Sheikh saw something special in me regardless of my nationality along with me so there are a lot of people saying that “did Pakistani girls die that there was a need to bring in an Indian girl?” but all I think is that these are the same people who are going to buy the ticket and go watch it. And when they do go to watch the film, they will get an answer themselves because regardless of the nationality, it is not related to when someone is taken into a film so I think my work is the answer to all the people backlashing at me.
- In your opinion, what do you think is the biggest hurdle to Pakistan’s cinema industry expanding and going international?
I don’t think that there is any hurdle as such it Is just that the people were not aware about how Pakistani cinema can be uplifted and now there is awareness and people are quite pro-Pakistani cinema so now everybody is taking the initiative to let Pakistani cinema go global because of course there is a lot of capacity and potential. Films like Actor in Law and Punjab nahi Jaungi and Na Maloom Afraad are all fantabulous and people taking the initiative to make such films shows that there is caliber.
- Javed Sheikh along with Nadeem Baig and Shahid Hameed sharing the screen together is a recipe for a blockbuster! How has it been for you working with such revered actors of the industry?
Working with the three biggest legends of Pakistani cinema was an honor for me. They say that when you want to be the best, you learn from the best- especially under the guidance of Sir Sheikh, I learned a lot as he is simply the best.
- Share a funny incident from the sets?
I was supposed to jump into a pool and it was minus 2 degrees and sunset time. I was supposed to get into a pool wearing a thin red gown and when I came to the pool everyone huddled around the screens saying that Aditi won’t be able to do it, how will she do it? And then there was a big splash as I jumped into the pool and everyone turned around, looking at me shocked! That was really funny.
- What is your take on films bridging gaps between India and Pakistan? To what extent does it help to create peace and understanding?
The cultural aspect of the industry brings the two countries together because we are very close together in terms of culture and it does help promote peace because when you see that bringing the talent from both sides of the border can create great art, it creates bridges of understanding.
- What’s next for you? Any project other than Wajood that you are working on?
There are a few projects lined up and InshAllah once things get materialized I will definitely be updating everyone on it.
- A message for the audience who will be seeing you for the first time in your film?
My message for the audience is to fasten the seat belts of their cinema seats because this flight is gonna be one hell of a flight.
- Who was the last person you got a text from?
Khalid Butt- the executive producer of Wajood
- Last book you read?
The untold story of Rekha
- All time celebrity crush?
Salman Khan, Ranbir Kapoor, Humayun Saeed, Fawad Khan and Sheheryar Munawar
- Your favorite TV series of all time?
- Your biggest fear?
Losing my mom
- Favorite perfume?
Calvin Klein Gold
- Morning person or a night owl?
- Favorite pizza topping?
- Acting for you is?
- One beauty product/brand you always need?
- Your favorite city in Pakistan?
Say one word for the following:
- Javed Sheikh: Legendary
- Frieha Altaf: Queen Bee
- Danish Taimoor: Handsome Hunk
- Momal Sheikh: Producer
- Ali Saleem: Glamorous
- Nadeem Baig: Pleasant