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Having been a popular child actor and later making a mark with the Aamir Khan production, Dangal (2016), Fatima Sana Shaikh admits that she has no qualms about approaching filmmakers that she wants to work with. She doesn’t shy away from sending texts or calling people in the industry and feels at times, it is necessary.
“I do that to remind people that I exist. I don’t do a lot of films, so I am not always there. Kabhi kabhi log casting mein bhool jaate hain ki yeh bhi actor hai. It is very important to hustle. Until and unless you don’t fight for your space and your positioning, no one else will. If I have to call and remind someone that I am there and I don’t mind auditioning, it’s okay. It’s not a bad quality to have.
lot in their lives by doing so. I like to create opportunities for myself and just not sit at home and wonder mere paas kaam kyun nahin hai. Aapko mehnat karni padegi aur kaam mangna padega,” she says.
She is glad that she has been able to entertain people in the last six months amid a pandemic with three releases –Ludo (2020), Suraj Pe Mangal Bhari (2020), and the anthology Ajeeb Daastaans. “I am glad that people are getting to see my work. Eventually, you work to entertain people. Pandemic hai, things are shut, and I can’t be more grateful that people are able to see my work that I shot before the pandemic. I feel great that we have OTT platforms that are airing films, which are not able to release in theatres. We now have a new medium to connect with the audiences.” Glad that the reaction to her last release Ajeeb Daastans was encouraging, she shares, “Many people from the industry reached out. It’s always special when people from industry appreciate your work as it gives you validation and hope. But, also the audiences’ response matters, who are the king and if they don’t like your work, it is game over.”
Earlier this year, she shot for a film with Anil Kapoor, who she admits she admires. “He is the life of the set and an incredible person. Always excited and passionate,” she states, talking about her costar, and adds, “When I sign films, it is more about instinct. My driving force is not always a big project or that this film has this big actor, and that’s why I should do it. What drives me is a good script and good director.”