Alankrita Sahai caught attention when she was crowned as Miss India Earth 2014. She was the first Indian to win 7 titles at the Miss Earth pageant held in the Philippines. In 2018, the model-turned-actor made her acting debut with the Netflix romantic comedy called Love per Square Foot. The same year, she also played the role of Alisha in the film Namaste England. She talked to NH about her aspirations, work experience and problems women face at the workplace:
1) How was your experience working with Arjun Kapoor and Vicky Kaushal?
My experience with Arjun Kapoor and with Vicky Kaushal was very different. With Vicky, it was our first commercial film together and Vicky has already been appreciated as a good actor. I was very happy working with him. He is a typical Punjabi boy who is down to earth and makes everybody laugh on the set. He has no arrogance and is very intelligent when it comes to playing any emotion. It was a fantastic experience working with him.
Arjun is very senior actor to me and if you are working with a senior actor, you learn so much from him. I learned a lot about the technical aspect of acting from Arjun. He was very friendly and I became quite comfortable working with him. He is a thorough gentleman on the sets.
2) People say that Arjun Kapoor has quite a temperament. Is it true?
With me, whatever our timings were on the set, he never really got angry. He claims that he is a cool person. Whatever is being said about him it is just because of the situation that might have sprung for some reason or the other. In front of me, he never yelled or got angry with anyone. He was very cordial throughout the shoot. He made me laugh a lot.
3) what projects are you presently working on?
I will be going to London in August for another shoot. There are four girls in this film and it’s a great production house. But the thing is that the title of the movie has not been revealed as yet and they will make an announcement in July. I am working in another film and I am in Punjab for shooting the same.
4) Where do you see yourself in the competition?
I never compete with other actors as my mom and dad taught me to always compete with your own self. As an actor, my job is to please people and win appreciation. Of course, criticism is also a necessary part of this job. For Example, I can’t compete with Alia Bhatt as she is a senior actor so, I have to compete with myself and let the audience decide if they like my work. I enjoy a simple life and I want people to enjoy my work. Personally, my life is very different. So my effort is to strike a balance between my personal and professional life and do some good work.
5) How do you balance your work and private life?
I am a very people friendly person. With people I work with, I strike a friendly chord, we hang out together and have our meals together. My work is the basic source of my being. I don’t like to sit idle. I love to work. If I am not working for a film or TV ad then I am busy with some social work which I don’t share with the media because that’s my personal happiness. It is important to work on your personal life, only then your professional life becomes better.
6) There is too much competition in Bollywood and there are many people who ask you to compromise on a certain level. What is your take on this? Have you faced such a situation where you were asked to make a certain compromise?
According to me, this industry is a media industry so everything becomes bigger than it should be. There are a lot of girls in other professions who face such a situation. In fact, women face harassment in every field. There are people who give in under such circumstances and there are people who don’t. It is a matter of personal choice too.
If you can live with choices you make then you have no right to blame or accuse anybody of your own guilt. But if someone forces himself on you then you better take action against that person, be it anywhere, in the film industry, in a restaurant, or any other workplace.
Then there are some people who make false promises that he/she will offer you a film and for that, you have to compromise yourself. These are the people who consider the other person weak and think that they can have control over them. In such a situation, you have to stand firm for yourself because tomorrow you may or may not get a film but your self-respect will remain intact and that person won’t be able to face you.
I, as a person never faced it because I am very strong. My family and my friends have taught all of us girls to stand up for ourselves. My mother is also strong. At the end of the day it depends on your value system and women today are much stronger.
Q7. What type of movies would you like to see yourself in?
I want to be like Angelina Jolie, I want to be the next action hero of India.
I would also like to do some grand costume drama like Deepika Padukone in Sanjay Leela Bhansali films. But at present, I want to experiment with every genre right from comedy, drama to die-hard action flicks.