Shikha Talsania on her first vernacular show, Shantit Kranti, and how she deals with rejection
The show features Shikha as a programme coordinator at a yoga retreat
Coolie No. 1 was her last outing, but Shikha Talsania is most remembered for her role in the chick flick, Veere Di Wedding. The actress is now back with a new Marathi show on Sony LIV, titled Shantit Kranti that’s also streaming in Hindi,Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam. Directed by Sarang Sathaye and Paula McGlynn, the show follows three friends who go on a holiday. It features Shikha as a programme coordinator at a yoga retreat.
Speaking about what made her agree to do a ver nacular web series, Shikha says, “It was a great opportunity to work with my close friend Sarang. We worked together in theatre, and have followed each other’s careers for a while. I have been an ardent fan of both Paula and Sarang’s work (they run a satire page called Bharatiya Digital Party on YouTube). But there were two main reasons for me to do this show — first it was quite challenging to pull off a role in Marathi and the second reason is the script.” As an artiste who has always acted in mainstream Hindi films, it was an unusual decision for Shikha to be part of a vernacular web series that has a niche audience.
“It’s about time that we have content like this in vernacular languages. There is a huge audience for this and it is very important for such shows to be out there. Shantit Kranti captures what friendship is and the universality of this emotion,” she explains. Though from the trailer it looks like the story is based and shot in Goa, Shikha says they shot in Lavasa in a biobubble. “It was a fantastic experience. Our phones didn’t have any network and we were disconnected from the world, and in a way Lavasa is the metaphorical version of Shanti-van, the resort where I am the programme coordinator and the place visited by the three protagonists on the show,” she reveals.
In all her previous movies, Shikha has been cast alongside top actors from Bollywood — from Ranbir Kapoor and Kareena Kapoor Khan, to Varun Dhawan — in key roles. Though she is veteran actor Tiku Talsania’s daughter, the actress says she has never used his name to bag roles. “Both of us are working actors, we both do what every other actor does, we go for auditions and if we get a role, we take it,” she offers. It still hasn’t been an easy journey for Shikha because she doesn’t conform to the conventional beauty standards of Bollywood. Yet, this hasn’t held her back.
“Your looks and being cast for a character according to what it needs, are two different things. Of course, I have faced rejection, it is part of the job. I am just an actor trying to look for work that excites me. I work very hard for it. I don’t wake up every morning thinking I need to break stereotypes. But I feel very grateful when people say I represent them, and that I am part of the inclusivity movement,” says the actress who will be seen next in an upcoming web series, and in the movie Jahaan Chaar Yaar, alongside Swara Bhasker and Meher Vij.