Shruti Bapna is an Indian film actress. She made her debut into Bollywood with the movie Wake Up Sid. She’s known for her works in movies like The Lunchbox, Mardaani 2, Gabbar Is Back, web series like Sense8, Breathe: Into the Shadows, and TV shows such as Ye Hai Mohabbatein, Saas Bina Sasural, and many more. Shruti has also learned various dance forms, been a voice actor, and built a stunning image in the theatre world as well.
Team Storiyaan had the chance to have a chat with the talented actress and know more about her life.
Questions and answers
What was your reaction when you first got the call for your role in 'Breathe'?
I was super excited. I wanted to do a show with Amazon and work with Abhishek. I was fascinated by the way they had written Natasha’s character as bisexuality and homosexuality were treated differently on screen. I wanted to be associated with such a name on the platform. I didn’t play such a character before. I felt stoked.
While growing up, you learnt Kathak and other folk dances. What dance forms are you currently learning?
I had an exposure to different dance styles like classical, semi-classical, and folk since my school days and also my mom is a dancer. Drawing seriousness towards performances and crafts, I started exploring different forms like Salsa, Bachata, a little bit of belly dancing along the way. Recently, I have tried Kizomba and Flamenco. Apart from that, currently, I am exploring Jazz-Funk and Freestyle. I try to learn something new and different whenever I have time.
You mentioned that you want recognition to be earned rather than attending events. Would you call yourself an introvert?
I am media-shy is what I meant. I wanted my work to speak for myself. I don’t want to be written about it because I attended a particular event or party. When people search for you and talk to you about your work in that film saying they liked your work and want to write about you, that makes more sense to me.
Being a firm believer of luck, would you say that it has played a massive part in your journey?
Because, at times, it’s about being in the right place at the right time. Of course, there’s a force that guides you, but at the same time, you have to be open and try your best. If you don’t do that, no matter the amount of luck you possess, it won’t work. At the end of it, you have to make the most of it. Keeping your potential in mind, and seeing your possibilities, the amount of hard work you can put in and give your best shot. That’s all you can do and leave the rest on the universe.
From your debut in 'Wake up Sid' to your recent role in 'Breathe’, how would you describe your journey as an artist?
The journey on the weighing scale has been 67kgs to 57kgs(laughs). A few key points I would want to say is not to get attached to your work in terms of the outcome as you should expect least. The other would be working on your craft. Keep the character as well as yourself intriguing by maintaining the essence and exploring something new. Do more inner work. I strongly believe in terms of life. It helps in our profession, immensely.
Were there any inhibitions you had or challenges you faced when you decided to play a lesbian character?
Yes, initially, it was a challenge. I wanted to understand the emotions a woman goes through when she’s attracted to another woman. I tried to understand the character. The inhibitions were the intimate scenes with Nitya’s character. It wasn’t something I stressed about or focused on as much. I let it go. I focused on how I wanted to portray Natasha’s character. I worked on it to be more comfortable.
You have worked with Irrfan Khan in The Lunchbox. What has been the best memory of working with him?
I was observing him like a kid. I was influenced by such intense energy and aura that I was utterly in awe. While filming, I forgot that we were acting. That’s how blown away I was. I can’t express it actually, because it was something sacred and close to me.