Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Nitu Chandra: Just being on screen is not the way I carry myself as an artist

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Actress Nitu Chandra, who has teamed up with storytelling brands Audible and Marvel to be a part of Marvel’s Wastelanders: Black Widow, gets candid with The Pioneer about her character of Judy Stark, making a global presence, and more.

Tejal Sinha

Making her strong presence felt globally, actress Nitu Chandra’s journey has been a profound learning experience, unveiling the facets of her creativity she’s yet to explore. After her remarkable performance in her Hollywood debut with the action franchise “Never Back Down: Revolt, she has teamed up with audio storytelling brands Audible and Marvel to be a part of Marvel’s Wastelanders: Black Widow. This original podcast series in Hindi is set in a post-apocalyptic future timeline where supervillains have established a new world order after vanquishing almost all the good guys. Now, it is up to the remaining superheroes — many of them hiding — to team up again and regain order.

Nitu, who takes on the role of Judy Stark, says, “I got this character because I guess every character matches with the personality that the entertainment people in the industry perceive about an actor. Judy Stark really matched my character. Not to reveal much, but the whole team really liked my voice; we did a little voice testing, and I was onboard.”

As an artist, embarking on this new venture filled her with a sense of confidence and excitement. Stepping into uncharted territory opened up a whole new realm of creative possibilities. Although it was entirely unfamiliar to her, she describes the experience as incredibly enjoyable and fulfilling. “We’ve already recorded and will be released very soon. After Never Back Down: Revolt, work from outside began coming to me. With that, I’ve been able to attract good work, and people have known that she’s been going and working there and has proved herself to do such a huge project.”

Do you want to know what she’s going to bring to you by being a part of Marvel’s Wastelanders: Black Widow? Let’s hear from her during this exclusive chat: “I have always believed in surprising my audience. The moment anybody tries to stereotype me, I think I come up with surprises, and this one is going to be extraordinarily different, and this audible is going to be very different than what I have done in the past. This is going to have a couple more seasons, as they’ve loved my work so much that I’ll be carrying on the character. You all will be surprised with the voice quality because you’ve mostly seen me and now hear me,” shares the Garam Masala actress, who has gone through a lot of training to make sure she fits into the character. She goes on to share more details about Judy Stark, as she says, “She is very empathetic towards people in need, but at the same time, she is what she is. Judy Stark comes with a legacy high up there, and she takes care of everyone in a cold way. She is a pretty cold leader but has a very warm heart, and she rises at the top in the world of vamps and villains.”

Throughout her journey in the entertainment industry, she has been recognized and celebrated for portraying strong and impactful characters. While she has no doubt excelled in such roles, she’s just eager to explore new horizons and take on romantic roles that are enriched by powerful storytelling and a sense of heartfelt warmth.

“Whether it be in Hollywood or Bollywood, I see no reason not to embrace the opportunity to immerse myself in such compelling characters. I just keep doing my work and creating an on-screen presence with Backdown Revolt. But having said that, there are a couple of projects I am reading right now. It’s not about coming on screen for everything; that is not the actor I am. As an artist, I work on screen when I feel the script justifies that I work on screen, or I contribute my voice to Marvel’s series, or I am doing theater or producing. I do things that make me happy as an artist. People do crave to see my work, which is what I’m happy for. I keep giving the audience a dose of my talent in different ways. Just being on screen is not the way I carry myself as an artist.”

“From the time I wore a beautiful saree in my premiere in Los Angeles,” she recalls when asked about the post-Hollywood debut. She continues, “People have started perceiving me as one of the actors coming from India and making it here without any support, and have started trusting me much more as an artist and as a human being (she giggles). Thinking that she was in India and did everything there, she came here, started from scratch, and made it happen here, which means she is trustworthy as an artist and as a human being. Here, too, I’m reading really good scripts. Now, when people approach me, they’re like, We want only you to do this role, which is for an artist a beautiful thing to listen to and gives confidence and trust after the film because the most important thing is to keep myself grounded and simple to be colored in different characters and roles, which is what I’ve done in Hollywood as well. I’ve proved myself to myself, which gives me a lot of confidence that here, when people are approaching me, it’s a different perspective now.”

The Satyameva Jayate actress has been determined to break free from any stereotypes. Each character that she takes on becomes a canvas on which to express her versatility and depth as an actor.

Putting a light on the reason she decided to try her luck in Hollywood, she enthuses, “I just gave it a shot to try my luck there, and nothing could have been better to get a debut with an action movie as a martial artist. Those kinds of action movies were not being made here. And so I thought it was a great idea to look for work where most of the action movies are being made, and that was Hollywood. With God’s grace, I put in a lot of hard work to make that happen, and it did happen, which I manifested. There has been no looking back since then. The attention of global makers is looking at who has done what, especially naming a few female actors who have gone from India to make it happen there, so I’m one of them. I’m very proud of the fact that it did happen.”

As an actor, she has not confined herself to a particular language. For instance, Vishnu, Godavari, Satyameva Jayate, and Manam out of the many in Telugu are Garam Masala, Traffic Signal, One Two Three, Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye!, No Problem in Hindi, Yavarum Nalam, Theeradha Vilaiyattu Pillai, and Aadhi Baghava in Tamil. As we come to the end of this chat, she exclusively reveals that she has done a Greek film and will also be doing a Korean film soon.

All in all, she’s on the path to becoming a Global star!

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