One look at her lineup of films, and you will realise Kriti Sanon has come a long way since her debut nine years back in Heropanti, on this exact day– Adipurush (touted to be India’s most expensive film), The Crew with Tabu and Kareena Kapoor Khan, Ganapath with Tiger Shroff and Amitabh Bachchan, and a romantic comedy with Shahid Kapoor.
The biggest challenge she faced early on was to break away from just being billed as a ‘pretty face’, she confesses. “When you do not come from a film background, it anyway takes time for people to even know your name. So I wanted them to know my name, and that name to resonate with talent. I always craved for validation as an actor. That started happening with Bareilly Ki Barfi, then Luka Chuppi did really well. I was taking baby steps in the right direction. Of course, after Mimi, there has been a huge shift, I got my first set of best actor awards. It took eight years for it to happen,” she smiles.
We ask the 32-year-old what was that phase like when she felt she could do better but filmmakers were not ready to take a chance with her. Sanon says it was ‘frustrating’, “There were a lot of moments of that… knowing I could do more, but not having the kind of opportunities I wanted on my table. When you come from the outside, you don’t know people, they don’t know you, it takes a while to make an impact, and for people to associate with you. You end up doing the best you can from what you are offered. It may not necessarily be the best thing in the world, but every film has taught me something..”
Over a span of nine years. Sanon has had a Mimi which finally convinced people she can shoulder a film on her own, coupled with commercial successes like Luka Chuppi and Dilwale. And today, she awaits the release of Adipurush opposite Prabhas, with a role as daunting as Sita ji. “There are a lot of sentiments and emotions associated with Ramayan and Sita ji. I have tried to give it my 100 percent and do whatever is the best I could. She was a very pure soul, most loving heart and a very strong mind- these three qualities coming together are a rarity,” she ends.