'Opportunities are less for child artists'

'Opportunities are less for child artists'

Young Star

A Twinkle in her eyes and a ‘toothpaste’ smile comes naturally to Shriya Sharma as she talks about her first National Film Award. Though a teenage, Shriya has won the most coveted honour of the country as a child artist for her role in Chillar Party.

The award is also special to Shriya, who entered the glamour industry more than a decade ago, because it has come unexpectedly despite having worked in several Telugu, Tamil and Hindi films such as Thoda Pyar Thoda Magic, Robot and television shows with Kanhaiya and Kasauti Zindagi Ki.

Metrolife caught up with Shriya when she was in the City to receive the Award. Fifteen-year-old Shriya seems to have understood the industry very well and that is evident as she talks maturely about her career. “I have spent around 10 years in film industry. Children film and child artists do not get much prominence. It means there are lesser opportunities for them to show their talent. In this scenario, receiving National Award is more than a pleasant surprise,” she says.

The award was given to all nine child artists of Chillar Party which had only one girl and that was Shriya who stood out among all as ‘Toothpaste’ in the film. “I was the only girl child in the film and it was a totally different experience for me because of that. In the beginning of the shoots, I used to sit alone and all boys would mostly fight with each other. They were a little boring also. It was only at the end of the shoot that we got friendly,” she recalls fondly.

Had she not become an actor, Shriya would have been a successful swimmer. At the age of three, she had learnt all strokes of swimming from her father. “My father wanted me to become a swimmer but he realised the talent in me and took me to right platform,” says Shriya, who will be in a Trilingual film Nee Thaane Enn Ponn Vasantham. 

Born in Himachal Pradesh, Shriya and her family came and settled in Mumbai for  consistency in her career. Despite being a part of the entertainment industry and having worked with big stars, a 10th standard student Shriya understands the importance of education. This year being a crucial one for her education, she will finish all shoots during summer vacations. “I loved working in films and television but education comes first. I want to focus on my studies this year and will shoot only in holidays,” says Shriya, who started getting commercials and acting roles after her appearance in Say Na Something to Anupam Uncle.

After so many stints with all the big stars including Shahrukh Khan in Kya Aap Panchvi Pass Se Tez Hai, her only regret is of not getting a chance to work with Aamir Khan. “One film that I really wish to have done is Taare Zameen Par. I long to share screen space with Aamir,” she adds. We hope that she gets this chance very soon.

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