×
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

She rocks

Actress Sheeba Chaddha is as precise and concise in real life, and an absolute delight to interact with, writes Shipi Madan
Last Updated : 25 January 2020, 19:45 IST
Last Updated : 25 January 2020, 19:45 IST

Follow Us :

Comments

In Badhai Ho, she warns her reel daughter (played by actress Sanya Malhotra), on the realities of marrying her distraught boyfriend. A candid, strong mother with a mind of her own, and well prepared to articulate her views, on point. Actress Sheeba Chaddha is as precise and concise in real life, and an absolute delight to interact with.

“It takes a while to adjust to the air of Mumbai, after returning from the relatively slow-paced languor of Lucknow,” she says as we begin our chat. Sheeba has just wrapped up the shoot schedule of Pagglait, a light-hearted entertainer directed by Umesh Bist. Incidentally, Sanya plays the lead in this movie. “There has been no map for my career, no ambitious game plan powering my choice of roles,” she says with signature candour. “Let us get real. For character artistes like us, there aren’t many fabulous roles written. I get to pick from what is offered, and make my best choice. But I genuinely feel blessed as I have largely had to turn down work, than have less work. When I look around and see so many talented actors out of work, I count my blessings. I get to do what I like and that in itself is a boon.”

Drama all the way

Sheeba took to theatre early on during her teens, growing up in Delhi. “I got through college through the dramatics quota, as my ridiculous marks in the board examinations just couldn’t have secured me admission,” she laughs. “My professor at Hans Raj College, who taught English, directed our plays as well and I did some amazing work then. When I saw a musical for the first time, it was an absolute revelation. I knew this was my space and I wanted to be a part of this world.” Of course, her family with a traditional mindset would have nothing of it, but Sheeba was adamant on pursuing her passion. “I come from a typical sardar family, rooted in business, with no figure in the family tree having ever pursued fine arts. But they did come around eventually,” she says. With reason enough. Sheeba has been part of a rich repertoire of movies including Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam, Delhi 6, Talaash, Raid, Gully Boy.

“I have turned down many roles because I want to be with my daughter as well,” she admits. “For instance, Zoya Akhtar’s Dil Dhadakne Do required 61 days aboard a cruise. Simply too long to stay away from my now 14-year-old,” she sighs.

“My husband’s work also demands a bit of travel. Either of us is always around, and in a pinch if we are not, I get my mother to come down to Mumbai.” The challenge lies in the consistency with which one gets good work, she believes.

“Sometimes there is a dry spell, with no work at a stretch. Then at times, three months are rigorous. It is quite erratic, much like any other creative field. But I like to ‘arrive’ as fresh as possible to every character portrayal.”

“Work has never been the most important thing in my life. That leads to an unhealthy obsession,” smiles Sheeba. Up next is the Vidya Balan starrer — the Shakuntala Devi biopic, web series Bandish Bandits with Naseeruddin Shah; and Mirzapur 2.

ADVERTISEMENT
Published 25 January 2020, 19:38 IST

Follow us on :

Follow Us

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT