Akshatha doesn’t want to limit herself to Sandalwood

Akshatha doesn’t want to limit herself to Sandalwood

The actor has been doing a balancing act since March; she was shooting for four movies at the same time

Akshatha Sreedhar Shastry

After the success of ‘Trataka’ and ‘Uddishya’, actor Akshatha Sreedhar Shastry is all set to make the audience fall in love with her again with upcoming Kannada films ‘Rajannana Maga’ and ‘Rajeeva’. By sheer coincidence, her character in both the films is called Kasturi.

In a candid chat with Tini Sara Anien, she reveals more about her roles and the films. 

Tell us more about the films. 

After a performance-oriented role in ‘Uddishya’, I am glad to be back with ‘Rajannana Maga’ and ‘Rajeeva’. I play Dr Kasturi, a doctor in ‘Rajannana Maga’, which has drama and action sequences in it. The film is directed by Kolar Seenu. 

In the drama-mystery ‘Rajeeva’, I play Kasturi, a student who gets married to an IAS officer-farmer, who helps his father with duties. The film is a complete package; it is like a meal with all the right spices. 

How different are the two roles?

The two women have different characters. I sport different looks in both the films. Dr Kasturi sports a light-makeup look and looks quite professional and Kasturi the student, sports a long hairstyle.    

Did you ever confuse your roles?

Both the films started off in March and were shot at the same time. I was called Kasturi on both the sets and I almost accepted it as my nickname for a while. Whenever anyone called out the name, I would jump in my seat, it became a part of me. 

How did you balance between the schedules? 

The crazy part was I was also shooting for two other films, a Malayalam-Tamil film called ‘Cochin Shaadi at Chennai 03’ and a Telugu film. It was total madness, one day I was shooting in Bengaluru, another other in the interiors of Mandya and then I would be travelling to Cochin. I don’t have a manager and I had to manage the entire schedule which wasn’t easy. Thankfully, all the teams I worked with were understanding and they adjusted their shoot schedules for me.

Are you excited or nervous about the films?

Both the films are expected to release soon. I am hoping that the audience will accept me in all the different avatars I am getting to portray.  

Is there a reason Kannada actors are looking for work in other industries?

I strongly believe that no actor is bound to a specific film industry. It truly doesn’t matter to an artist about which language he or she is working in. Focusing on one’s career and working on varied roles is the goal. 

Each of the industries has their own characteristics and style of working. I have noticed that things get done a little slower in Sandalwood. Also, all the other industries are more technically informed than the Kannada film industry.

With the #MeToo movement being discussed avidly, have you ever had any such experiences? 

Most artistes have gone through something or the other but it is about how one deals with it too. I am thankful that I have never had any scary ordeals. I am positive that if anything like this happens in the future, I will have a strong stand, even if the project is from a big banner. If anyone continues to misbehave, I am not scared to let go of the film.