Anushka Sharma has gone from strength to strength since her Bollywood debut in Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi (2008), for which she earned a Filmfare Award nomination. In 2004, she even established her own production house – Clean Slate Films. Here are four tips she that helped her hone her craft and deal with rejection.
You just have to keep auditioning. Honestly, I didn’t audition for a lot of films and I’m grateful for that. I did audition for 3 Idiots, which I was rejected for. I don’t think I was too attached to films, so it wasn’t something I was taking to heart too much. I didn’t think that was the direction I was going to take, but because I was told to keep my doors open, or some jazz like that, that I was just doing it anyway. So I did maybe two or three auditions for two or three films, including Luck By Chance.
DON’T LET REJECTION GET YOU DOWN
Don’t take it [rejection] to heart. Today I realise how important it was that I was rejected for all these films. If I had done and gotten all those ads that I was rejected for, I know for a fact Aditya Chopra would’ve not taken me in my first film because he was clear he wanted a girl who nobody has seen.
WATCH YOUR BREATH
It [breathing] is the most important part of acting. It’s a way you can get into the emotion you’re supposed to be feeling. When you have to be nervous, you start breathing heavily so you start palpitating in that sense and your body will also start to react. That is the reason why, what was very difficult for me in Phillauri was that I was in a harness most of the time so I was wearing this vest, for my own safety of course, but it was very tight. So I couldn’t breathe properly. As an actor you want to modulate your breathing so you can deliver a scene because there’s a graph to a scene. I felt like sometimes I wouldn’t be able to do that because I couldn’t breathe properly. I couldn’t control my breath as I would normally.
DON’T GIVE OFF AN AIR OF DESPERATION
By the time I went to audition for Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi, I didn’t give a shit. Because I was so done with auditions by then, I was like “screw it, it doesn’t matter if I don’t get it.” I literally went like that. I went to the gates. They told me my name would be written and given there. I went there, I said “Anushka Sharma, here for an audition at Yash Raj Studios,” they said my name wasn’t there. I said, okay bye! I just walked off. Maneesh Sharma, who directed Band Baaja Baaraat, at that time was an assistant director on the film. He called me and said, “you were supposed to come for an audition”. I said yeah, but your guys told me my name’s not there. I didn’t have an ego, I just didn’t want to deal with all this. I didn’t want to let it go to my head. I hadn’t walked too far, so I came back. I went with zero expectations. I know for a fact that I was selected because I wasn’t too desperate to get that film. That’s what they tell me. When you’re not so desperate, you do things a little bit differently. So I was performing without a care and I think that helped me.