‘Hyderabad is like my second home’: Actress Mrunal Thakur
When I first saw the designs, I thought it’s a six-year-old brand and I got so hooked on to their signature embroidery, the floral vibe that they have
Hyderabad-based label Mishru by Swapna Anumolu’s latest collection titled Form & Feeling, drew on nature as its ultimate muse at the recently concluded Lakmé Fashion Week. Actress Mrunal Thakur was the showstopper for Mishru. She wore a gorgeous, dreamy red lehenga embellished with hand-cut 3D self-coloured flowers that pack in the heady romance of flowers in full bloom.
The creation spotlights impeccable craftsmanship through its silk thread textured flowers drenched in intensely feminine fuchsia pink, French knots and a silk crystal dupatta. CE speaks with Mrunal Thakur known for her non-conformist roles and choices. She has been appreciated for her sartorial choices where she sports both known as well as upcoming homegrown fashion brands. Excerpts:
Tell us about your experience of working for Mishru.
When I first saw the designs, I thought it was a six-year-old brand and I got so hooked on to their signature embroidery, and the floral vibe that they have. And I really liked something that’s floral. I love embroidery. I love the colours, like the one that I wore — a monotone. It looks really grand, but it’s very easy, and breezy. So it’s wonderful to work and to meet Swapna and to understand where she’s coming from. What is the motive behind those designs? It’s really beautiful.
What are the initial feelings when you walk the ramp as the showstopper?
You do get nervous and get jitters and I really hope that everything goes okay. I am also always excited. I really enjoyed doing this because there was two years of gap due to Covid-19 where we couldn’t really do all of this. I’m really happy to be a part of the show.
You have received rave reviews for Sita Ramam. How do you feel?
I feel great. I think the choker that I wore for one of the outfits it’s very much like Sita’s look so I’m very happy to be wearing that choker. It’s like a signature Sita look. Talking about the rave response, it’s incredible. It’s my debut and to have received so much love from south India. It’s beautiful. And the best thing is Mishru is also from Hyderabad. So there’s another connection. I’m really happy that I’m working for a Hyderabad-based designer.
How difficult was it to learn Telugu for the movie?
Really difficult. But once you learn it, you enjoy it. I just need to spend more time in Hyderabad and get used to the language. I think once I’m there, it will be like on the click.
Tollywood versus Bollywood. Was there any difference?
Yes, there’s a lot of difference. What I loved the most about Tollywood is that there’s so much preparation. It’s not like in Bollywood it doesn’t happen, but it’s just the language is different. So communication is different. And I think I got so lucky with my first film being so larger than life experience.
Any memory of working or travelling to Hyderabad you want to share with us? Perhaps the food?
Yeah, it’s the food. I think I live for food. And Hyderabad is like my second home. Most of my Bollywood friends and Mumbaikars have asked me to have you shifted yet? Or will you be or are you on the verge? Because I’m always travelling to Hyderabad.
How’s your journey in movies been till now?
It’s beautiful. It took a little longer to reach where I have but I’m happy to be here today. And I think I’m here to stay. I’m glad that the kind of films that have been offered to me are coming my way. I am definitely the lucky one. I never thought I would come this far. But to be able to explore not just Bollywood like Hindi films, but Marathi, Telugu, Tamil, and now I’ve realised that it’s such a huge scope as an actor and language should not be a barrier. So I’m also making sure that I’m learning as many languages as I can.
Tell us more about how’s Mrunal offscreen. What are your passions?
My passion is to eat. Either we are discussing restaurants or we’re thinking about what to eat and what not to eat. Apart from that, I love watching movies. Whenever I have a day off, I go to watch movies in the theatre and do a movie marathon. I can watch like three movies at a stretch back to back. And that’s what my ideal holiday looks like.
So, how do you unwind?
I unwind by watching movies. Also I have a cat, he’s a fur-ball. Julie allows me to calm down. Or I just spend some quality time with family — that’s my unwinding process.
What does fashion mean to you?
Fashion means comfort. And it should be whatever you wear it, you should be able to walk out with confidence.
Tell us about your upcoming projects.
Pippa is the one that is going to release on December 2. And it’s based on the India-Bangladesh 1971 war. I wasn’t really aware of this war until I did this film, and discovered so many beautiful things and the kinds of efforts that people have taken. We have Ishaan Khattar, Priyanshu and Soni Razdan featuring as well. After that in February, I think we have Gumrah released.
We have Aankh Mein Choli, and Pooja Meri Jaan also releasing. I’m really excited for next year — I have covered different genres. You have human drama, thriller, comedy and a patriotic film.