Anushka Sharma is an actress, a host, model and a massive presence in the Digital World. As a trending face in the Alright squad, she’s constantly seen acting in some of India’s biggest Digital Channels such as Filtercopy, Alright, Timteliners, Hasley India, among others. She has also done several advertisements for Samsung India and Infinix.
Anushka further became a darling of Bollywood with her cameos in films like Ujda Chaman and A.P.Chauhan.
She recently spoke to Team Storiyaan about her journey and body of work. Make sure to have a look!
Questions and answers
We watched your TedTalk, where you said that you have different sides and states of mind. Can you tell us, what do you do when you are in the most vulnerable state of mind?
Whenever I feel like I am in the most vulnerable state, I always have this thing in the back of my mind that better days are yet to come. If something is going well, I feel like better days are yet to come. I also take a moment and look back and recall, ‘when was the last time I felt the same?’ and I get to know that that was the time when it changed everything because hard days taught me better lessons.
You have worked with different media channels like Hasley India, RCVJ, Timeliners, we name it, and it has your name in it. Which amongst them was the best to work with, and why?
I think that is the best part of being a freelancer that you go and work with a lot of people and different teams, and you get to know that every team has a different process and a different bifurcation of work. As a human, that’s a better experience than you go on set and meet different people and make different friends. But if I have to pick one, it will no doubt be ‘Timeliners‘ because it was my first sketch, and it gave me recognition. ‘Alright‘ has played an important role in my journey and I love the people over at ‘Hasley India,’ ‘Pataka‘ and ‘PDT‘ in fact. Now I have started working with Bombay channels as well and so, everyone is so beautiful and cute.
Which is your personal favourite subject to dive in, while working in a YouTube video?
Back in my theatre days, I used to pick characters that had a lot of layers or which used to give some substance to the audience. I feel like now, the audience is investing only 5 minutes. It’s a different thing that a lot of people watch it for entertainment. Still, if they are watching it for entertainment, I just want them to carry something with them in the end, whether it’s an emotion, a message, or something else.
Can you tell us a bit about the first-ever brand that you had worked with?
My first brand was a ‘Kaya skin’s beauty product. It’s a cosmetic brand, and I remember posting it on my Instagram. I was so happy as it was going to come on YouTube, and I literally wrote, ‘Do watch me on YouTube,’ as I was very happy back then.
You come from a non-acting background, and you had a very timid and shy personality back in your college. How did you transform yourself into the bold and outspoken person you are today?
I think that’s just accepting who you are. Supposedly you’re an introvert, and you personally feel you need to change, then bring a change. But if you want to change your personality to look cool in front of others, you’re being dishonest with yourself. People are smart enough to pick on your insecurities, and then they will start making fun of it. You will start feeling self-conscious about those things. On the other hand, if you feel confident about who you are, that will reflect on your personality. If you are self-assured, then no one can break your confidence.
When was it that you realized that acting was your call?
‘Hosh sambhalne ke baad‘ (After coming to my senses). I realized I was meant to be an actor after coming to my senses.
You have faced an inferior complex in your teenage years. What majorly helped you overcome that?
As I mentioned earlier, I think it’s the confidence that only comes from knowledge and experience. All of us have a positive side within. We just need to recognize it. As the saying goes- “happiness lies within.” There is this beautiful, positive energy, we all need to let flow inside of us.
Talking about YouTube, can you speak to us in detail about your journey as an actor and working on YouTube?
I was in the dramatic society of my college, and one of my seniors, Karan Juneja, called me and scolded me. He said that, “this is your final year, and you have to do something.” My exams were going on, and there was an audition for ‘Timeliners.’ I went for the audition and gave a terrible audition. During the period, there was another audition taking place for a Bollywood movie. I went there and gave the audition and luckily got selected by God’s grace. Another incident I remember is when a friend of mine told me about an audition for ‘ODF.’ He forwarded them my number or something, and I gave the audition. ‘Rahil Mehra‘ helped me with that, and I got selected for the part. Then I gave more auditions, there was a collaboration between ‘ODF‘ and ‘Hasley India,’ and through that, I got to know people from ‘Hasley India.’ Then I started working with them, and the rest is history.
A lot of young adults go through a lot of self-esteem issues at some point or another. You have been through it too, can you tell us how you comforted your younger self then?
Just be yourself, accept yourself and take time. Nothing will happen in one day. It will take time, but be constant and you will know if this place is actually for you or not. Invest your time in it, go for it, and it may result in you finding your way, or you will find that it isn’t meant for you.
You have worked with brands closely, what is more, close to you, YouTube or commercials?
Commercials are my money, and YouTube is my art. Both go hand in hand!
You belonged to a middle-class family, how difficult was it to maintain your expenses in your pursuit of becoming an actor? Since actors usually do require a lot of expensive products to maintain that glow.
Personally, I don’t really have any expensive products. That is why I look up for collaborations with brands.
How does a regular Sunday look like in your life?
If the camera is not rolling and I’m not at a public event, I’m always in my one-piece, shorts or pajamas, and my mother keeps scolding me for that. She says I should at least wear something decent.
If you were to describe your life in one word, what would that word be?
I can’t describe it in one word. But roughly, I can say it is calmly, layered to be crazy.
If you were to change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
I would love to learn how to manage time. I’m really bad at it.
You are an absolute inspiration for all the young people out there. What is that one piece of advice that you would give to anyone who wishes to do something they love for the rest of their lives professionally?
Every person has a different journey, and if you feel this is your thing, grab it, give it your 200%. It requires you to put your blood, sweat and everything into it. A lot of people curse their journeys as the opportunities and circumstances are not equal for everyone. But when destiny is not in your hand, your hard-work and your skills are in your hand. Work your hardest, and then you’ll get to know if it was meant for you or not. It’s never late to pursue your dreams.
a. Essentials to a women’s wardrobe: One-piece shorts, I think they are damn required.
b. Cheat day meal: Dahi wale golgappe
c. Ideal weekend: I just want to lie on the beachside with a loved one and sip a mocktail with the cold breeze singing a melody in my ears.
d. Favorite travel destination: There are many: Amsterdam, Las Vegas, Los Angeles. I want to see the world.
e. Define acting: Acting is an honest lie.