Kriti Sanon’s latest Bollywood film, Mimi is all set to stream on Jio Cinema and Netflix on 30th July. Mimi, a comedy–drama film, is directed by Laxman Utekar. In the film, Kriti plays the role of the protagonist ‘Mimi’, who is set to become a surrogate mother. The film is based on the 2010 Marathi film, which is a Samruddhi-Porey directorial, Mala Aai Vhhaychy.
Excerpts from the interview:
Q What were the preparations you had to undergo to play a surrogate mother in the film?
There was a lot of mental as well as physical preparation; the biggest challenge was gaining 15 kilos. The film’s director, Laxman sir, had told me that I had to look pregnant in all my close-ups in the film. While I am blessed with a brilliant metabolism level, which lets me eat anything and still remain skinny, gaining so much weight and getting up from the floor etc., became a task. Also, I wasn’t allowed to do yoga or any workout and because of that unhealthy lifestyle, it took a toll on me.
Additionally, my character in the film has an emotional journey — it is about a girl becoming a mum. So I almost chewed my director’s brains, asking him about the character’s mannerisms etc., and reactions and responses to certain situations. I mean, several aspects of my character are unlike who I am personally, which was a bit of a challenge for me to enact. For instance, the anger of the character I play — while in real life I do get upset, I don’t go about screaming and throwing things at people. But by the end of the film, I was talking and thinking like Mimi. [Smiles].
Q Mimi is the remake of a Marathi film?
Honestly speaking, it is not a remake. It is, however, inspired by Mala Aai Vahhaychy! The film was based on a true incident where a foreign couple arrived in India about 12 years ago to find a surrogate. But after they found a surrogate and she got pregnant, they left. After that incident, the laws have become much more stringent with respect to foreigners. They aren’t allowed to come to India looking for surrogates.
Q The film includes an abortion angle, where the mother supposedly doesn’t agree to abort her baby. What is your take on incorporating such an aspect in the film?
While it is a beautiful concept to be handing over the baby you created to a couple who cannot have a child of their own, it is also complicated! Both the parties’ interests should be protected. I mean, the laws should be strict on both the parties so that neither is a surrogate mother left midway through her pregnancy nor, after the birth of the baby, is allowed to not hand over the baby as per the contract.
In this film, we share a beautiful message, which I don’t want to spoil for you guys and hope you learn from watching the film instead. I’d rather want the audiences go through the character’s journey and understand why she did what she did and perhaps even end up saying, ‘Oh! She did the right thing!’ [Smiles]
Q You’ve taken careful strides since you’ve entered the industry. How do you look at stardom?
I feel I’ve a lot more potential than all that I’ve yet explored in the industry, something I have realised I might continue to feel. [Chuckles]. I’m very ambitious and I believe I am in a great phase of my life because I’m getting to do diverse roles, as I’ve always desired.
As for stardom and fame, I’ve craved both since I’ve entered the industry and mean a lot. I believe people’s love and appreciation in whatever form uplifts us artists. First, people recognising the work I do validates my skills as a good actor. For instance, I hope for people to tell me that I made them cry or that I made them laugh in a particular scene. When your work generates emotions in another, it is the most satisfying feeling ever.
That being said, I also believe stardom comes with a lot of responsibility; you’ve a lot of power to inspire people and you have a voice that you can use to motivate others.
Q Your upcoming projects
I have some diverse projects on hand. Hum Do Hamare Do, Bachchan Pandey, Bhediya and Adipurush. I’m lucky that I took up all these projects. While Hum Do Hamare Do with Rajkummar Rao is based on the concept of adoption, Hum Do Hamare Do is a warm film, which the family will love watching together.
And in Bachchan Pandey the chemistry between Akshay sir and me is something to watch out for. Then, there’s Bhediya, my first horror–comedy with Varun Dhawan, in which I look different from what people have seen before. Moreover, working with Varun after such a long time since Dilwale (2015) was fun....