‘It’s a feather In my cap to be the Gaalipata girl’
...says actor Vaibhavi Shandilya, who shares her experience of working in Gaalipata 2, and more
Vaibhavi Shandilya, who marked her south Indian debut with the Kannada film, Raj Vishnu (2017), waited for the right script to return to Sandalwood, and she finally signed Gaalipata 2. “Who can say ‘No’ to a combo, which has Yogaraj Bhat and Ganesh? With the original film still having an emotional connection with Kannadigas, accepting this film was easy, and I couldn’t wait to return to the industry that made me an actor. I also love living in Bengaluru,” says Vaishnavi, who feels lucky to be the ‘Gaalipata Girl’.
The film has Vaibhavi starring opposite Ganesh, and despite not knowing much of Kannada, the former ensured she did her homework before even giving the audition. “For a person, who is not very aware of the Kannada language, I learned that Gaalipata means ‘Kite’. I also made sure to watch the first installment twice. As an actor, if I’m working in a language that I don’t know, I watch it once with subtitles, and the second time without subs to understand the film better. I felt Gaalipata was a sweet family drama and had many elements to it. The film made me understand the director’s working style, which also helped me to work for Gaalipata 2,” she explains.
In Gaalipata 2, Vaibhavi plays Shwetha, a small-town girl, who has studied Kannada literature and loves the language. “Shwetha is a calm-minded and understanding person,” says Vaibhavi talking further about the pressures of working in a Yogaraj Bhat film. “The lines given by him are like written in gold, and I had to pronounce them perfectly in Kannada. I would make sure to go through all my lines, at least a day prior. I never took prompts or help to ensure I wasn’t disrespecting the director and his vision. I felt that I should be up to the mark, and make Gaalipata 2 a feather in my cap,” she says.
Gaalipata 2 brings together an ensemble, and Vaibhavi agrees that it is a welcome move too. “Every story needs different types of actors to be involved. It can’t always be a ‘One Man show’. Of course, I love to be part of films that have me in the solo lead along with the hero, and that’s a different feeling altogether. However, the Gaalipata franchise gives actors like me the space to work with some of the top actors, and I see it as a learning curve. The duration of my role never bothers me,” says Vaibhavi who reiterates that Yogaraj Bhat has written the script in such a way that it gives equal importance to every actor in the film.
Meanwhile, Vaibhavi, who also plays the lead heroine in Dhruva Sarja’s Martin, is overwhelmed with the love she is receiving from Karnataka. “I’m in discussions with a few directors, and I’m happy to have more Kannada films coming my way. If I get to shine in the Kannada industry, the whole credit will go to the Karnataka audience. It takes a huge heart to love a person, who is not from their land.”
Backed by Ramesh Reddy’s Suraj Productions, Gaalipata 2, which stars Pawan Kumar, Diganth Manchale, Sharmiela Mandre, Nishvika, and Samyuktha Menon in pivotal roles, is slated for an August 12 release.