Thursday, November 30, 2023

Chaitanya Choudhry feels Sukhee starring opposite Shilpa Shetty

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Actor Chaitanya Choudhry, who recently made a comeback with the Shilpa Shetty starrer Sukhee, gets candid with The Pioneer about working on his character, preps for the role, and more.

Tejal Sinha

A light-hearted, slice-of-the-life story that’s been enrapturing hearts quite a lot–Sukhee, starring the very gorgeous Shilpa Shetty in the lead role. The stellar cast that the film has, also marks a major comeback of actor Chaitanya Choudhry, who has been a pretty big name in the Television industry. And the Kahiin To Hoga actor has been very Sukhee because, “This has been a great opportunity for me to be cast as a lead opposite Shilpa Shetty. As an actor, it’s been a dream to play this character Guru, a very interesting character.”

His character Guru is a victim of his own circumstances, responsibilities, and the society he lives in. He used to be an independent, fun-loving, and ambitious man, but due to certain events in his life, he changed. Henceforth, in order for him to live the character, the Sarvggun Sampanna actor first made sure to understand Guru from the director-writer Sonal Joshi. “She knew Guru very well and she had told me that the trickiest casting for me was Guru’s chasting. Someone who would play Guru needed to have that versatility to play this complex character. To understand who Guru was I really had to get into Sonal’s mind. So I had a lot of interactions with her regarding Guru, a lot of workshops, did a lot of work on scenes for like a month and a half, and days to days with her, and got my career graph very clear.” With all of it, he got so prepared for his character that once he was on the sets, he says he was not Chaitanya Choudhry, but submerged completely into his character Guru.

Now be it in the trailer or the film itself, his character gives us a legit idea of the typical Indian husband. But for him, playing Guru had nothing sort of negative but a ‘great and complex’ character. “You see a very human side of Guru. Its a very human character. It’s about how we are in real life; we have our good moments and bad moments. Guru is basically a victim of circumstances, he’s not a bad human being. One gets to see the evolution of this character that tell you the story about what he was and why he has became that he is. That is why Sonal was very clear to me that he is not a negative character but he is a human. And I had to understand that very clearly because it is very easy for an actor to give a character if it is positive or negative. It is just a character because then it becomes parallels with my life. If I have a bad day, I might end up shouting at somebody, it does happen. But then after shouting you realise you shouldn’t have had, then you apologise.”

In an acting workshop, actors and other people in the same field get together to work on their skills and make connections with casting directors, performers, and acting coaches. Many actors give and take advice on how to improve their preparation for parts, auditions, and performance skills. And so for him, “It basically helped me to understand my character properly and understand who Guru is. That is important for me because if I don’t understand the character I am playing, the traits, and what is his back story, I don’t understand the reason why he is the way he is then how can I perceive the character?

What I can say personally is that with the help of workshops, I get to understand from the makers and writer what the character was in her mind. She had Guru’s backstory ready and was working on the scene to see how she wanted the scenes, what should be the outcomes for the scenes, how a scene takes the story forward and the positioning of the scene, what’s Guru’s frame of mind during that scene, and what he is going through in this particular scene.” He even reveals how he was so engrossed during the workshops that he had made notes and markings all through in his script. He even made a whole character definition of Guru.

Well, working with an actor like Shilpa, an experienced seasoned actor that she is, is no less than a dream. And guess what? Initially, Sonal and the production house had called Chaitanya and Shilpa together before and soon began their reading sessions together. “With this, the comfort level was established. I was a bit intimidated because she is such a big name and such a big actress. For me to be able to work with her, I had to first get my shyness away. They’d been really helpful and Shilpa has been so gracious. She was so sweet and accepting and it was wonderful that I developed a friendship with her.” Well, he even recalls enjoying a great time with his co-star with a huge Patiala glass of Lassi, having a fun time. He even speaks of how encouraging the diva has been to him after that he’d done some really intense scenes.

A big name in the Television industry, a much-deserved comeback, no doubt he has been exploring his craft with immense love. With having such immense experience in the Television industry, he says, “Television teaches you to be seasoned doing scenes day in and day out. It’s not easy! You get the scripts 5 minutes before the scene is on. It really makes you solid as an actor, your base becomes very solid and I think that really helps. Also, there’s a flip side to this as well—when you overdo something you become very monotonous and you stop developing as an actor. But again looking at the good, it makes you so much more resilient and strong that you can do anything, it becomes your best friend. No other actor intimidates you because you are already so well-tuned to your craft by that time. However, I do feel that doing scenes too much, ends up in creativity suffering a bit. But yes, TV is a very tough job and it teaches you a lot. It’s a brilliant stepping stone to learn the craft and move ahead in life.”

Ending this chitter-chatter on a lighter note, he highlights how he makes sure to keep his cool and calm in different unconventional situations that come his way in real life. Yes, sometimes it gets difficult to keep calm, but he says you just have to let that situation be as it is and then slowly-steadily work towards solving it.

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