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'Love is not just about loving a man'

By SAMEENA RAZZAQ
June 08, 2022 12:10 IST
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'Our age doesn't define our maturity, our experiences in life do.'

Photograph: Kind courtesy Pratibha Rantaa/Instagram

Like Kangana Ranaut and Preity Zinta, Pratibha Rantaa dared to dream.

And like them, this girl from Himachal Pradesh is trying to create her own niche in Mumbai's entertainment industry.

After taking up a complicated role in the Web series Aadha Ishq, Pratibha will be seen in Kiran Rao's next directorial.

Pratibha tells Rediff.com Contributor Sameena Razzaq, "Kiran ma'am really liked the way I looked. I remember sitting with Aamir (Khan) sir. Actually, he was the decision-maker. Before meeting them, I thought I would forget all my lines and go blank, but they were so welcoming."

What is your interpretation of Aadha Ishq?

When I read about Aadha Ishq and Rene's character the first time, I was thrilled.

Rene has so many layers that you really enjoy exploring all that.

You get to know how versatile you can be as an artiste.

Rene is a rebel. If she wants something, she just wants it.

That's something I really like.

Not many characters give you scope of journeying from a child to a woman, like this character.

Yes, this character has an interesting transition.

She is just 18, but she experiences a lot.

Our age doesn't define our maturity, our experiences in life do.

Rene comes from a broken family, so I would sit with my friends from broken families to understand their state of mind.

We all have empathy and because of that, I was able to imbibe those experiences and perform on screen.

Photograph: Kind courtesy Pratibha Rantaa/Instagram

Aadha Ishq talks about forbidden love and sacrifices. Have you ever sacrificed something for love?

I feel love is not just about loving a man.

There are different forms of love.

Of course, you sacrifice for your parents and best friends.

I have also sacrificed for people close to me.

It's a part of life.

Have you ever experienced unrequited love?

No.

 

Photograph: Kind courtesy Pratibha Rantaa/Instagram

You will be seen in Kiran Rao's next directorial. How did that happen?

I feel these are my grandparents' blessings.

In a short span of time, I am getting opportunities and I feel really lucky.

I tell myself not to get distracted because God has given me these opportunities and I must make the most of them.

The character I play has so many variations.

It is different from what I have done on television and OTT.

I auditioned for it, and Kiran ma'am really liked the way I looked.

She called me for an audition again.

I remember sitting with Aamir (Khan) sir. Actually, he was the decision-maker.

Before meeting them, I thought I would forget all my lines and go blank but they were so welcoming.

You come from a small town. How did you convince your parents for a career in showbiz?

I come from a background where everybody likes to do everything. Because of the lack of resources and awareness, they never really admitted they loved acting or dancing.

My grandparents were teachers, my parents run a business.

They noticed that I was inclined towards dancing since the age of two.

Dadu was the happiest, and he made me learn dance. He used to hold me in his arms and teach me dancing.

In school, I used to participate in theatre workshops, and attend dance classes.

I grabbed at whatever opportunities I got in Shimla.

I pretty much started working on myself from childhood because I wanted to be on the big screen.

I wanted to come to Mumbai, so convincing my family wasn't that difficult.

But convincing them about a career in acting was tough.

I think God helped me and things got aligned.

I just had to have courage to make that journey to Mumbai.

Photograph: Kind courtesy Pratibha Rantaa/Instagram

What happened when you arrived in Mumbai?

When I came to Mumbai, I didn't know about auditions.

My friends helped me.

I remember my first audition was so horrible, and I had become so nervous on camera that I just ran away from there.

Luckily, I kept doing auditions and after six months, I got a television show.

To run your house, you need money. So I thought, you don't question doing television.

I got lucky that I met a good director. He polished me as an artiste.

He told me there was a world beyond television.

Then I auditioned for a Web show and here I am.

Photograph: Kind courtesy Pratibha Rantaa/Instagram

Did you ever feel like giving up?

No, because I have been working very hard from day one.

I faced rejections because I was told I don't know how to speak or perform.

I was told I am not perfect for the character.

Initially, you don't know how to dress up, you don't know the basic things, so it doesn't work out.

Your role model has been Kangana Ranaut because she is also from Himachal Pradesh like you. Have you met her?

When I was in Shimla, I really wanted to work with Kangana. Her journey is very relatable.

Preity Zinta passed out from my school, and people would call me Preity Zinta.

People made me feel like I belonged to this industry, so my confidence had increased.

My family would always tell me that their lifestyle is different and girls from the industry don't get married. That was their biggest concern.

Eventually, my self-confidence got me here.

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SAMEENA RAZZAQ