Location Diaries: A Fitting Challenge
This weekly column details the fascinating encounters that often take place on the sets of a film and this week, Sshivada talks about her experience shooting for Idumbankaari
Shooting for director Arul Ajith's Idumbankaari was an interesting yet challenging experience for actor Sshivada. She started shooting for Idumbankaari just a week before the covid lockdown. "They were mostly shooting Ramya Pandian's portions till then and I shot with Ramya for just one day, after which lockdown was declared. The main challenge for all of us was maintaining the same body weight for continuity, despite the uncertainty of shoot due to the covid situation!" says Sshivada.
Her baby girl Arundhati was 7 months old at the time and Sshivada had gained a little weight during the delivery period. " I play an NIA agent and so I had to look absolutely fit in my costume of tucked shirts and trousers. So, for the next schedule, I managed to lose some of the weight and got fit. But the delays due to Covid Lockdowns made it quite tough to stay in shape all through."
For this film, she had to deliver several pages of lengthy dialogue. "In addition to the length, each line also had lots of crucial information. So while dubbing I had to be extra careful. After the whole corona gap, recreating the emotion of the scenes and delivering my lines without missing out any crucial information was a challenge."
During one particular shooting schedule, Sshivada could not celebrate her baby Arundhati's 2nd birthday. "I had shoot till 2 am on that day, so I couldn't return home to cut the cake with my baby and the family. Also, because I had left home early for the shoot, way before she woke up, I hadn't even seen her on her birthday. Though I got a bit emotional, I felt that when Arundhati grows up she will understand the importance of giving the fullest to the profession. We cut her birthday cake the next day in the presence of close family members."
Sshivada was grateful to director Arul Ajith and the team for taking extra care in scheduling her shoots as she had a baby at home. Impressed by Arul's working style she reveals, "Several late night shoots had to be completed on time as getting the same location for night shoot again was tough. But the director handled it all completely calm and composed. His planning and eye for detail were very commendable. Once he finished filming an entire scene involving many actors and lengthy dialogues in just one hour and the entire unit lauded his work."