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Interview

If I reveal the suspense of Machine, you will be shocked, says Kiara Advani


The M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story actress tries generating excitement for the Abbas-Mustan thriller. 

Keyur Seta

Kiara Advani was appreciated for her supporting role in M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story. She will now be seen as the lead in Abbas-Mustan’s thriller, Machine, along with Mustafa Burmawalla. In a friendly chat with Cinestaan.com, she speaks about her experience of shooting an Abbas-Mustan thriller and why the film won’t be harmed if its suspense is revealed on the day of its release. 

What character are you playing and what is its importance in the storyline?
I play Sara Thapar, who is very urban. She is an eternal romantic. She is edgy. She has hobbies which are different than others — she loves racing cars. This is how she meets Mustafa’s character in the film. From then onwards, it goes in full Abbas-Mustan style with lots of twists and turns and what not. You always see their actresses giving great competition to the main protagonist. Even in this film, it’s quite a face-off between both are characters. 

Does your character have grey shades?
Everyone thinks it’s me! Just wait for 17 March. That’s my answer. 

You have acted in a couple of films before Machine. But it’s the first ever film for Mustafa. How was it working with him?
He is actually a very, very confident boy. We met just once before we left to shoot in Georgia. The directors didn’t do any workshop with us because their style of working is very spontaneous. When I started off, I made a list of directors I want to work with and they feature in them. They don’t want you to rehearse and do readings. The day before we went to shoot, I asked Mustafa to read few of our scenes together. It was okay. It was like a casual reading. We were just trying to understand each other’s space. When we reached sets and the minute the camera rolled, he was a different person. That reading was nothing in front of it. I was just blown. I was like, this guy is pretty confident for his first film. 

And we are very competitive with each other. If I do a good scene, he wants to outdo me and vice versa. I think this is very good because it keeps us driven and energised throughout the shoot. Obviously, this makes the scenes better. He has a good comfort level and understanding of cinema. He has grown up on films. He has studied direction. He also didn’t feel that he was a newcomer on sets. 

Which are the other directors from your list?
It’s a really long list. Just to name a few, Karan Johar, Sanjay Leela Bhansali, Rajkumar Hirani. I don’t know when I will get to work with these names. But this is my wish list. Abbas-Mustan and Neeraj Pandey are also on the list. And I am really lucky that my second (M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story) and third (Machine) films are with them. 

In today’s times, the suspense of a film is out on Friday morning itself. It gets shared on social media and everywhere. Does this bother you?
In our case, even if you find out what the suspense is, it is going to be so shocking that you would go to see as to how exactly it is possible. Trust me! I can guarantee you that everything you are thinking right now about the film is nothing. It’s something else only. For example, if I tell you the ending without telling the story, you will be like, ‘How is this even possible?’ Maybe the film will do better if it’s revealed (laughs). 

You feature in the remix of the iconic song, ‘Tu Cheez Badi Hai Mast’... 
It’s really surreal to be in front of the camera dancing to a song you have grown up dancing behind the camera. I always used to dance to it as a kid in my chaniya choli. And now I am here re-doing the song. Now I am feeling the pressure as everybody is asking about it. We felt really lucky when they told us that they have got this song and want us to do it in the film. But we are not going to try what they did. It’s a classic and it will be there forever. We are not trying to change or re-do any of that. It’s just a 2017 version. We hope you like it and dance to it. It is not a promotional song. It is very much in the film. It comes in a situation which is a twist. 

How different was shooting your last film, M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story and this one? Aren't both films completely different? 
Extremely different. Both teams and units are different. M.S. Dhoni was more into reality. This one is also reality, but it’s heightened reality. It is complete commercial Abbas-Mustan style. 

You come from a non-filmi background. Did you always want to be an actress? How did your parents react to this?
I wanted to be an actress from ever since I can remember. Since the age of 2 or 3, I knew that wanted to be one and even they (parents) realised it because I was always dancing and performing in front of the mirror. If an aunty asked me to show my dance, I would be the happiest to come in front and perform. When my parents realised that, they encouraged me. My mom made sure I went to all the dance classes because she knew my interest and passion towards it. My dad was just very clear that I had to complete studying and then do whatever I liked. Without their support, I wouldn’t have been here.