Even as she awaits the release of her national award winning film, and filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar’s most expected Calendar Girls, model-turned-actress Akanksha Puri is flying high with her Sandalwood debut Lodde, also starring Komal Kumar.
The actress, who earlier worked as an air hostess for an international airline speaks to DC about Lodde including the rain song, for which she shot in “natural” rain for three to four days, and her big break in Bollywood — Calendar Girls.
“I could not have asked for more, as my Sandalwood debut has everything which an actress can look forward to. My solo introduction song was shot entirely in the rain. Though, it could have been shot artificially, the director was very particular and insisted upon shooting it in natural rain. It was shot for at least four days around Balmuri with breaks during clear sky. The entire team was surprised when I did not even catch a cold,” says Akanksha, who hails from a unique background —her father works as assistant commissioner of police, and her mother is an astrologer by profession in Indore.
Unlike many, she is not from a big city, and she did initially face hurdles. The actress further reveals that her astrologer mother predicted her future in the glam world, but she never took it seriously. “I would laugh at my mother when she predicted my future but eventually while I was working as a crew member, I started doing modelling mainly for commercials and print advertisements. I had almost done 80 such projects before I made my acting debut in Tamil Alex Pandian, and later in Mollywood starring with Mammootty in Praise the Lord,” she says.
She plays Akanksha in Lodde, which is a role quite similar to her real self. “As a crew member, I was free for a couple of days after long distance international flights. It is when I chose modelling which took me on another path,” she says. Insofar as Calendar Girls is concerned, she initially got a call from one of her co-coordinators in the industry. Almost 3,000 individuals had tried their luck for the movie, and I was fortunate that the director saw his character in me for the film, and I was on board after a few screen tests,” she says, adding that it is about the emotional journey of models who feature as calendar girls before ‘taking’ off.
She loves travelling to new places and feels that it is one of the main reasons for her to have chosen the job as an international crew member job. “Driving, is my second best hobby. Insofar as dancing is concerned, I did a workshop and am also a quick learner and I pick up different forms of dancing,” she concludes....