Monday, March 4, 2024

Sana Amin Sheikh: I want people to be aware of Sana as an actor, and not just Sana

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Actress Sana Amin Sheikh, who is all set to make her OTT debut with the most awaited Scam 2003: The Telgi Story, gets candid with The Pioneer about working on the show, her character, camaraderie with Gagan Dev Riar, and more.

Tejal Sinha

Even before the Hansal Mehta, and Tushar Hiranandani helmed Scam 2003 premiers, it’s already been making the right noises. The makers had recently released the trailer of the show, and one can not hold back for September 1. Based on the 2003 India Stamp Paper Counterfeiting committed by Abdul Karim Telgi, the series is inspired by Sanjay Singh’s Book Telgi Scam: Reporter’s ki Diary. For the unaware, it is the second installment in the Scam franchise followed by Scam 1992. Well, for all the obvious reasons, this show has been special. But, for Sana Amin Sheikh, it’s been much more special. And why not? After all, she’s all set to make her OTT debut, a big break indeed!

If you wondered if the show is going to focus on the scam and all around Abdul Karim Telgi (played by Gagan Dev Riar), we are also going to see an entire journey of Nafeesa’s life (played by Sana Amin Sheikh), who is the wife of the main protagonist. Putting in some more interesting light on it, the Kya Mast Hai Life actress shares, “The show brings to us about how and what the scam that Abdul Telgi has done. But along with it, there is also a softer side to his life that you will see about his family, what they had gone through, what his wife went through, and how they deal with it. She loved this man and she was madly in love with him, stood by him and always believed in him but when the news of the scam broke out the entire nation and the world just was just intrigued to know who this guy was. The way people reacted, and how the media reacted was different. But you will get to see that vulnerable side of the storyline, on what about the family, through my character.”

No doubt to the fact that Sana has been a big name in the television industry, having played various different characters throughout her journey. But for her, playing a mother on screen with her debut OTT show was a challenge in itself. In order to play the character, she used her own exercises and techniques, whether they were in the spontaneity zone or the method zone. “We had a lot of reading sessions before we started the shoot,” shares the Singham actress, and she goes on to recall how director Tushar asked her to undo everything. “For an actor, it’s a learning thing that you undo and redo things because subconsciously you know these things are there in your mind when you go on the sets. However, when I used to get into Nafeesa’s costume, my head used to always be covered with a dupatta. Since I am from a middle-class background, I have seen Muslim ladies in my house and how they dress up, walk, and talk. So there were things that I could take from my personal life along with the help that I got from the team. Even in the most emotional scenes, when I used to tell Hansal sir, I needed music for this particular scene to perform. He used to play a song, which used to be a surprise for me because there was a scene that was going on, and he played this song, which is in one of the scenes, which was like, I knew this song; it was an old Lata Mangeshkar song, and I reacted to it spontaneously, and that was shot.”It was in 1995 when Sana made her proper debut as a child actress in Hasratein. She even harks back to how she used to enjoy being on set, and always wished to be the character she used to play. But, here comes a revelation- “I started getting offers for movies and all and I also got an offer to act in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s movie called Khamoshi as young Manisha Koirala and at that time, my parents were adamant about me to complete my studies and since the shoot was in Goa and I was at school at that time. So my mother gave me a break for a few years and asked me to complete my studies and what I felt like later on” And then she worked as an RJ, and then enraptured hearts with Kya Mast Hai Life, and offers began pouring in.

Well, another revelation- She had auditioned for several other web shows earlier too, but for some reasons, it couldn’t happen. But, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that Scam 2003 was destined for her because she says, “It is the biggest project in my career with Hansal Mehta sir. I want people to not only be aware of Sana but also of Sana as an actor. What I want right now is for people even if they see me for one scene, they should take me along with them after watching Scam ‘Okay there was Nafeesa, there was Sana and this girl that made her debut in the show. I can’t thank Hansal Mehta sir and Mukesh Chhabra sir enough for giving me this break.”

Sana goes on to share how her camaraderie with Gagan, both on-screen and off-screen has been amazing and that they have been great friends. “I hope the connection reflects on screen as well, and I am sure we have. You will see a very different love story going on in the Scam,” she shares. Now, as we come to an end of this fun chitter-chatter, she also speaks about the pressure of Scam 2003 being compared to Scam 1992 and says, “People are thinking that you know there is this pressure on the actors and the team. Talking about pressure, I don’t know who took the pressure (she giggles). But as actors, whenever we were on the sets, I saw that nobody was actually taking the pressure; it was about the joy that we were working in a big brand and taking it forward, and if your honesty in the work and your feelings and if you are giving your best, I don’t think there is this pressure that arises because that is like a smooth flow and it reflects on screen the offscreen vibe and the on-screen vibe, and then it is for the audience to see.”

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