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LOVE BYTES WITH SUKHMANI SADANA

— EXPLOSIVE FASHION

A writer at heart, she aced copyrighting in a leading advertising agency and challenging scripts for Vikram Bhatt's '1920' and ‘Creature'; hosted travel shows for CNN IBN, modelled for leading brands and debuted as an actor in 'Khotey Sikkey’. Today she's relishing acting in Sony LIV's new-age web series 'LoveBytes' and has a lot more on her plate! In conversation with the girl who is making headlines — Sukhmani Sadana.

 

You have a diploma in Advertising and Marketing. What made you diversify from script writing to acting?​

I studied copywriting and communication at my advertising- marketing course in Xavier's Institute of Communication, Mumbai after which I began working at Ogilvy and Mather as a copywriter for some of India's biggest brands. Here, my colleagues used me many times as a free in-house model for their brands! Hehe! And, before I knew it, I was getting noticed in advertisements like Ponds and got more acting assignments!! Post Ogilvy, I didn't want to write for advertisements as much as I was inclined to write for films. Vikram Bhatt and Kunal Kohli gave me a chance to write for them. And so, writing for screenplay and dialogues happened. Ever since, acting and writing both have been a part of my career. Aditya Chopra picked me to act in his television show as the lead girl and then CNN for several travel shows and before I knew it I was acting as much as writing… happily!

 

Tell us about how you got approached for ​acting​.. with no formal training what was the experience like?

I was cast in a television show for Yash Raj Films as one of my first projects and then acted in 100-odd advertisements. Work got me more work so luckily I was asked by CNN IBN to host travel shows for them which is like the best job in the world ;-) One gets paid to travel… life couldn't be better… I wasn't trained in acting, but being a writer  helped me to feel emotions more intensely since I know how a writer thinks while typing out a character… thankfully my directors have been awesome teachers and even better correctors when I went wrong!!

 

What made you take up role​s​ that w​ere​ so challenging?​ ​Tell us about feelings… the emotions you experienced while enacting the character​s​.

Whenever I act I forget who I am; it's only fun to take up challenging roles and come back and feel 'wow.. I really did some good work out there today!' Only when you play a role out of your comfort zone is it satisfying. Anything that comes easy never feels like a pat on your back. I love playing different roles — being a snob arrogant socialite in 'Khotey Sikkey' to a slum girl in an upcoming web show. As for emotions, I would say I live in Mumbai but I'm from a small town Amritsar where I've lived a simple middle class life so experiencing both stratas of life in close proximity surely gives me a real perspective that I can apply in my acting skills.

 

 

The style of Love Bytes seems simple and direct. Tell us about ​the experience of shooting the web-series.​

It's something different and that got my attention when I was offered this show. I think it's pretty progressive and highlights unspoken issues loud and clear. It's not apologetic and has beautiful insights on today's relationships especially live-in ones. I would think every girl and boy would have something relatable which is why Season-1 did really well. My experience has been fulfilling as an actor once again because there was no script as such and we spoke on-the-spot stuff to the camera… which our viewers loved about the show. The shoot was quick because web shows don't have the luxury of time and production. It was challenging but like I said — challenge equals fun!!

 

It's not a conventional theme. Did you ever feel "OMG Why am I here?"

Not at all. I'm one of those girls who would always support unconventional concepts and scripts. Being a writer I get all excited when I hear or see something that gets me to feel, 'woahhh'! Now that's something I would have never thought of. I love new things… I love surprises and infact dull repetitive kinda writing gets me all blah. So yeah, cheers to creative stuff always from my side… be it a new food dish or a new form of innovation. Anything pleasantly different!

 

What did acting in Love Bytes teach you in terms of evolving as an actor?

I would say without trying to sound vain (I hope I don't) that from season 1 to season 2 I evolved a lot as an actor. I was all bubbly and chirpy in the first season but that's also because my character called for it then but in season 2 I was a lot more controlled and subtle with my performances. My character is going through a massive emotional turmoil in season 2 so I had to slow down and be mature, upset yet grounded with my head on my shoulders and the kind of high energy girl that sukhmani is… it was challenging yet so satisfying to see myself act all grown up with a calm serene version of myself… I learnt a lot in Season 2.

 

On a broader note... what is the most useful skill that you've had to learn ​for writing and acting​?

The fact that I observe a lot helps me. I try to feel what the person in front of me is feeling… connecting with the deep emotions of the world always gives us a better insight of how others feel. And then you'll write deeper better stuff and act more organically and naturally because you know better. Apart from that I take up as much work as I can because I feel that only more and more practice can make us better. No work is small or big… any work is good and just adds to improvement and polishing.

 

 

What's next on the plate?

I'm currently acting in a web show; it's a small role but I'm very excited about it because it's something I've never done before. The director is one of my personal favourites and we have already shot quite a bit. Also, I'm writing a film which is based on a true story and I'm very excited about this one as it's coming out very well. And I'm hosting for NDTV Good Times too—fashion and lifestyles show. So yeah life's good! I'm always grateful but my drive to work more and more only gets bigger :-)
 

Sukhmani Sadana
Sukhmani Sadana
 
Sukhmani Sadana
Sukhmani Sadana and Kushal Punjabi in 'Love Bytes'
 
14-NOVEMBER-2017
 
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