Sonakshi said she looked like me earlier, says the young Akira

Mishiekka Arora, who is not even 11, is raring to do more films now.

Keyur Seta

A number of child artistes have astonished us over the years with their mature performances at a tender age. But what sets Mishiekka Arora apart from others is that she was required to perform fight scenes and play the role of a child accused of a crime. To pull off such a character at such a young age – Mishiekka turns 11 in November – is no mean feat. In an exclusive chat with, Mishiekka shared her varied experiences while shooting for Akira and why she considers Katrina Kaif rather than Sonakshi Sinha her idol. Excerpts:

When did you start getting interested in acting?
I have been interested in acting ever since I was very young. Whenever I saw a person with a phone, I used to go in front of them and pose. So since then I have had an interest in acting. 

How did you get cast in Akira?
There were two co-ordinators who auditioned me. Based on my audition, they called me for a look test. They took another look test in front of the director [AR Murugadoss]. The director said, ‘You look like a second Sonakshi.’ 

You have performed karate action in the film. Did you undergo any special training?
Yes, I underwent 45 days of karate training. But apart from that, I have been learning judo for some time. I am a green-plus belt in judo. 

How was the experience of shooting the film?
It was a very good experience. But the schedule was very hectic. I had to wake up very early in the morning and we used to get done only by 6 pm.

Did you get a chance to interact with Sonakshi Sinha?
The film was being shot in Jodhpur. One day, Sonakshi had come and interacted with me. She said that she used to look very much like me when she was my age. Only her hair was longer then. I also had long hair, but I had to cut it for the film.

Can you recall any memorable moments during the shoot?
There was a blue-coloured house in Jodhpur where we were shooting. During the shooting, a lot of people had gathered there, and media as well. They were doing a video recording. I got scared by all this. At that time I realized what these actors and actresses would be going through.

Apart from studies and acting, what other activities are of interest to you?
I am learning the piano, kathak, music and judo. I am also learning English songs. 

Would you like to continue acting?
Yes, I would like to. 

Right now after this film, or after growing up?
I want to continue right now itself.

What type of roles would you be interested in doing? Would you like to be a heroine or another action girl?
I am okay with playing a heroine or an action girl. But I am more interested in doing fight roles. I would love to do roles which are challenging. 

Which actress do you idolize?
I like Katrina Kaif. 

Any particular reason?
I really like the way she does things. Whatever she does on screen, I like it. 

You have done ad films before this film. 
Yes, I have done 12-13 advertisements. I have done one ad with Anushka Sharma for a green tea brand. 

How challenging was it to shoot for a feature film after shooting these many ads?
Shooting advertisements wasn’t so challenging. But shooting a film was very challenging because I had to carry out a lot of karate stunts, like punches. This was more challenging than doing an ad film. 

You must have seen yourself on TV. What did you feel when you saw yourself for the first time on the big screen?
I was very happy. When I saw myself on the screen, I was like, “Wow!” 

How did the karate scenes go?
I had to put in a lot of effort. People I hit got hurt a lot. But it was enjoyable. They used to make note of every little thing. They used to look at it very minutely. For example, the kick should have gone a bit further up. 

What was your rapport like with director AR Murugadoss?
He helped me a lot. He used to look at every little thing. Like he used to observe the kaajal [kohl] and if it was a bit thin, then he himself used to make it thick. He used to look after me and treat me like his daughter. Once we had to shoot at a place where not many people could go. When we went there, he took care of me. He made sure I don’t fall down and get hurt. 

Do you have any other films in the pipeline?
So far I haven’t received any project. But I wish to act again. If I get an offer, I will surely go ahead.