Desi Videshi girls of Tarak
The female leads of the film, Sruthi Hariharan and Shanvi Srivastava, talk to CE about their experience playing their roles, the director’s characterisation of Tarakram and actor Darshan
In Darshan-starrer Tarak, director Prakash Jayaram presents two female leads in Sruthi Hariharan and Shanvi Srivastava. While the former as Sneha plays a gardener’s daughter, the latter plays an NRI Meera. CE speaks to the actresses, who share their experience of playing desi-videshi girls, the director’s characterisation of Tarakram and actor Darshan.
Sneha is a girl of today’s modern society, but believes in Indian tradition and culture
The character Sruthi plays is that of a middle-class girl and a gardener’s daughter. The actress says, “Sneha is educated and ambitious, hoping to work in a corporate someday. She becomes a trusted member of a business family and joins the company. Prakash kept repeating that my character does not like uncomfortable situations. When they do happen, she steps in to alter them,” Sruthi reveals about her role.
She believes that her desi character will be appreciated by Kannadigas across the world. “Kannadigas who live outside the state and country preserve their tradition and culture,” says the actress, adding, “They continue to celebrate the festivals and language.” She has seen this while shooting for movies: “Whenever we go abroad for a shoot, they are around encouraging us. A few situations and characters in Tarak have been drawn from real life, from what we see in NRI life.”
Tarakram lives from the heart
Tarakram, played by Darshan, is a man any woman would desire, says Sruthi. “He does come with his baggage, but he sorts it out during the course of the movie,” she says. “The character he plays is protective of all who he loves; it is a quality we would all like in a man. Tarakram is a man who lives from the heart and, to a large extent, I believe that this character is an extension of Prakash Jayaram. Barring the fact that the hero fights and dances, I think deep down and emotionally, Tarak connects with Prakash.”
For everybody Darshan is a superstar, but when he comes on the sets, he becomes an actor
Sruthi is working with Darshan for the first time, and according to her, Darshan is an inspiration. “Whenever we had time to converse, we were curious about his journey… after listening to it, we realised that it has never been easy for him. Secondly, everyday on the sets, there was something that would throw me off balance. People would crowd to catch a glimpse of him, but he stayed calm and concentrated on his acting. He is a director’s actor and is supportive as a co-star. Outside, he is seen as a superstar but, on the sets, he becomes an actor,” she says.
Meera’s outlook is westernised, but believes in Indian custom and tradition
Shanvi Srivastava plays Meera, an NRI, in Tarak. The actress says that, in spite of living abroad, she remains desi at heart. “My get-up is westernised, but Meera believes in traditions and customs. I am a bindaas girl, stubborn, intelligent, sensible and child-like. This character is nearly like me in real life, but I am not hyper energetic like Meera. For that, I had to put in a lot of effort on screen,” she says.
Tradition and culture never really fade away
Shanvi believes that no matter where you live, you should be rooted to your native culture. “We may try to imbibe the modern culture, but deep down we remain Indian. Tradition and culture never really fade away,” she says, “Woman, in general, should not fall for any kind of pressure and should follow their heart. According to me, women are a symbol of tradition and culture”.
Tarakram is a complete man
Shanvi kind of fell in love with Tarakram, she admits. “Tarak is a complete man... caring, and he is respectful towards women. These are what women look for in men. I also love guys who are into sports, which is also a quality of Tarakram,” she says.
Darshan patiently handles his co-actors
Darshan is patient and calm, says Shanvi, adding that she felt like an amateur around him. “His experience in this industry is awe-inspiring, but he is patient with his co-stars,” she says. “He is a big personality and he is respectful, which is something we should all learn from him,” says the actress. But when you are facing the camera with the actor, you need to wear heels because Darshan is tall, she says. “Prakash is strict but he is mindful of his cast and their comfort, he even didn’t mind me not wearing heels in few scenes because he knew about my ligament tear,” she says.