With a cheerful, bubbly personality, Manjari Fadnis has always been the relatable, affable actress. In her latest digital film, Barot House, Manjari ventures into uncharted territory. She plays the mother to two children in a happy family which is torn apart by a tragedy.
Co-starring with Amit Sadh, Manjari says she had to come out of her comfort zone for the film. The Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na actress opens up about being typecast as the sweet girl-next-door, her theatre experience and returning to her first passion - singing.
Barot House must have been an emotionally draining experience!
This was definitely by far the most intense, dark role that has come my way. What appealed to me about it was that it was going to take me out of my comfort zone. I was anyway very bored of playing the normal sweet girl-next-door. I was very sick of being typecast into that kind of space. It gave me an opportunity to do something where I was required to actually get into my emotional memories, which I would rather not. I took it up as a challenge.
What kind of memories did you have to revisit for this role?
I am an animal lover and I have always grown up with pets in the house, they were treated like children. Dogs live a shorter life than us and it's painful when they pass. That's the pain I tapped into. I had to unfortunately recall those moments when I lost them.
Barot House is based on a true story.
The fact that it's based on a true incident, something like this actually happened in somebody's family, immediately caught my attention. I was glad to get an opportunity to portray such a character which has actually gone through emotions like these.
Barot House is also your first full-length film on a digital platform.
The good thing about the digital platform is that stories like Barot House are getting an audience, a platform, getting producers who are willing to invest in something like this. It's also great for actors who want to experiment with different kind of characters. For example, if I am known for a sweet girl kind of a look, producers and casting directors generally tend to think ki nahi yeh iss mein hi fit baithti hai. That's so unfortunate because we as actors want different kind of characters, which may be completely opposite of what we are in life.
How important is the medium for you?
It doesn't matter what the medium is as long as something challenges me. With Double Deal Reloaded, I got the chance to play a very complex character on stage. I had never done professional theatre before that. I was waiting for two of my films to release at that point - Nirdosh and Baa Baaa Black Sheep - and I was not happy with the kind of scripts coming my way. Which is why I decided to practice my craft on stage. Immediately after that I got to play Chandramukhi in a stage musical adaptation of Devdas, where I did a bit of live singing as well.
But you have music in your genes.
Yes, I'm a classically trained singer. I come from a musical family, my nani was a music teacher, my mother can sing really well. I was a finalist on Channel V's Popstars 2. It has been on the back burner because all my focus has been on acting. But I have revived it in the last couple of years and I'm coming up with some singles which I will be sharing with you all soon.
Follow @News18Movies for more