Sandeepa Dhar says, 'After Dr. Arora, I want to do a feature film with Imtiaz Ali.'

Actor opens up about being a part of Imtiaz Ali’s Dr. Arora, her role in it, and more

Rohit BhatnagarUpdated: Sunday, July 17, 2022, 10:51 AM IST
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Pic: Instagram/iamsandeepadhar

Sandeepa Dhar will soon be seen in Imtiaz Ali’s Dr. Arora. It will premiere on July 22 on SonyLIV. It is helmed by Sajid Ali, and Archit Kumar. The Free Press Journal caught up with the actress for an exclusive chat. Excerpts:

What was your reaction when the show was offered to you since it is based on sex problems?

Forget sex problems. Firstly, it’s an Imtiaz Ali show. I was blown away since, for every actor, it’s like a dream to work with him. I tested for the show, and for about a month, there was no development, and eventually, I forgot too. While I was in Puducherry for a family vacation, I got a call from his production house, and Imtiaz loved my screen test. He spoke to me over a video call.

Besides being lucky, were you intimidated by Imtiaz Ali?

I was blank. In fact, I thought it was a prank call initially. I felt whether I would get the show or not, but I was happy that Imtiaz liked my test, and he knows me now as an actor at least. I thought I won Oscars that day! I was super nervous, and I kept looking at him throughout the video call. It was very intimidating, but he was so grounded, sweet and warm.

Imtiaz's brother has helmed the show. Did he give his Midas touch on the sets?

A lot of it happened before we got on the sets. I did many readings together with him and Archit (co-director), but he wasn’t there on the sets since Sajid and Archit co-directed the show. Mithu, my character, is his favourite character from the show. Since I was constantly told this, I felt a lot of pressure. He is a great producer and knows when to give the director freedom.

Dr. Arora is your first performance-oriented show, perhaps on OTT. Your thoughts?

Indeed it is. It’s kind of daunting. Since I am slightly introverted, my first day on the sets was a little awkward. I had to teach a character how to control their lust, and it is done along with singing and dancing. Imagine I had to do this in front of 50 odd people! Ajitesh (Gupta), my co-actor, is fantastic. We got along so well. Our camaraderie had to be very friendly, and luckily we did a lot of readings, so our scenes happened very organically.

Go on…

To play Mithu was taxing and challenging but at the same time, it was creatively a satisfying journey. Of course, I had to change myself to play Mithu and internalise so much. For an actor, it is rewarding that the makers are happy with what they wanted from me. I hope audiences will like it now too.

Dr. Arora has set a benchmark for you. How do you see your journey ahead from hereon?

I want to do a feature film with Imtiaz now. I have been a very content actor. If I have justified myself while picking up a project, then I don’t regret it if it doesn’t work. I stand by my choices. I am just glad that I am in a position where I can work with people like Imtiaz.

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