When Swathi Reddy’s name popped up in the cast and crew list of upcoming Telugu film Panchatantram, everyone was curious about what made her return to Telugu cinema after four years.
“I don’t want to say it is a comeback. I am doing the film because I liked the script when the director Harsha Pulipaka narrated it,” she says, adding, “The film happened out of the blue.”
Swati’s last Telugu release was in 2017- London Babulu. She did a Malayalam film, Thrissur Pooram, in 2019. The actress says perhaps because of the hiatus, there’s a perception that she cannot be accessed. “When people call me, they ask me where I am, not how I am,” she reveals, adding that the Panchatantra team had told her they took three months to reach her.
Philosophising that the world is at a stage when nothing can be guaranteed to last, and nothing is in our hands, she says, “I am just trying my best to take everything easy and do things with a sense of detachment.”
When we ask her whether her stoicism was due to the current pressing times, Swati says “I’ve always been this way. I’m constantly learning the hard way that I have no control over what people think about me and how they see me.”
COVID-19 has taught us that things don’t go the way we intend, she says, and adds, “We can’t direct our lives too much. I am taking each day as it comes, and not attaching too much importance to any emotions.”
Last year in July, Swati quit social media. “It was too noisy. I thought social media was not the right place to be at that point of time. I am just an actor with a blue tick. Balancing an online life and real life was getting surreal, she reveals.
“I stopped having fun on social media; it wasn’t productive and it literally became a chore. Moreover, I was never a social media addict, but I was glad that it gave me a voice,” she says, adding that she had realised that, “Even if I have a voice people will still interpret it whichever way they want to.”
The actress says, “I have learnt to accept that others views are different from mine. There is nothing to be taken personally. Everyone has a valid reason for their views.” But Swathi hasn’t sworn off social media for her. She says she’ll be back when she thinks she has the skill for it.