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Pia Bajpai: I am choosy about my films

Last updated on: March 18, 2013 10:10 IST

Pia Bajpai: I am choosy about my films

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Radhika Rajamani in Hyderabad

Piaa Bajpai is a well-known face in the Tamil industry having done quite a few films like Goa, Aegan, Bale Pandiya, Ko, to.She made her debut in Telugu film with Ninnu Kalisaka (2009) but it wasRangam (Telugu dubbed version of Tamil film Ko) in 2011 which made her became a recognisable face for the Telugu audience.

Her second Telugu film, Back Bench Student, directed by Madhura Sreedhar Reddy, starring newcomers Mahat Raghavendra and Archana Kavi, released last Friday, March 15.

The actress unravels the experience of doing Back Bench Student.

Why did you choose a triangular love story as your second Telugu film?

When Sreedhar Sir narrated the story, it was not like a love story. It was about a back bench student. When the first girl leaves him, a second one enters his life. It seemed fine and okay.


Image: Pia Bajpai

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'There were no reference points for my character'

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Had you heard of Madhura Sreedhar Reddy as a director?

Not before this. After the narration, I enquired and got some information about him like how he makes films with a fresh look and also how he promotes films well.

So I thought let's go for it. I was shooting for Dalam (bi-lingual in Telugu and Tamil) where I had an intense role. I thought I should go for Back Bench Student as it had a different track.

The second half of the film belonged to you, where you play this insecure, possessive Chaitra. Were there any reference points for you to play this character?

There were no reference points (laughs). Chaitra is intense but not negative. People, her relatives mainly, never bothered about her. She is a self-made woman.

She is protective about her man when she falls in love. When she sees different girls coming in she feels insecure. It's the same in life too. I tried to react in the way I would do in real life


Image: Pia Bajpai

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'I am happy I have done something that I haven't done before'

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What was the toughest and the most challenging scene to act?

Chaitra was a dangerous role in a way. She should be in control, otherwise she could have become a negative character. I told the director she is a complex person. I had to be balanced. I think I did justice to the role.

I am happy I have done something that I haven't done before. She is insecure and possessive but a strong character-- in her career too-- but only weak when it comes to relationships. 

There was no challenge. The only thing I had to keep in mind was I had to be in control; otherwise the character could convert to a negative shade.

I knew about the character Archana was playing. In fact, Sridhar Sir spoke about both the characters and asked me which one I would like to play, though he wanted me to play Chaitra. I too wanted to play Chaitra.

You have generally played bubbly characters. Your role in Rangam (the Telugu dubbed version of the Tamil film Ko) particularly stood out. Comparisons are bound to be there. How do you react?

I am very happy with the response. Not in one Telugu review have I been compared with Saro (the character in Rangam). Nobody even mentioned Rangam or Ko. People can't compare as these are different characters.


Image: A scene from Back Bench Student

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'I am ambitious but I wait for good things'

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Was doing a Telugu film difficult for you?

I am doing films in Tamil. I have done a film in Malayalam. I have got the experience of doing films in a language I don't know. It was easy to learn the lines in Telugu as the language has a Sanskrit base.

There was a considerable gap between your first Telugu film Ninnu Kalisaka and the next. Why?

After Ko I got the same kind of roles. Moreover, I was doing a film in Malayalam, Masters (with Prithviraj) and one in Hindi.

I am ambitious but I wait for good things. I am never in the race. As the saying goes, you are as good as your last film. I do my best and I have got superb reviews so far.

You've done a spate of Tamil films...

Once I made my debut in Tamil, I kept getting more films. I am choosy about the films even there.

How were Mahat Raghavendra and Archana Kavi, who made their debut in Back Bench Student, as co-stars?

Mahat is a good friend. We shot for 25-30 days together. He is an emotional guy. On the sets, he is a kid. He used to play there. It was fun with Archana and Mahat on the sets.


Image: A scene from Back Bench Student

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'I will continue doing south films'

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You said you are doing a Hindi film now. Will you continue doing films down south?

Yes, very much. This is my bread and butter. Whatever I am, it's because of these films.

What is it like juggling films in different languages?

If you want to do something, you can do it. I finish one project and go on to another. So far there have been no date problems



Image: A scene from Back Bench Student

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