Rishi Kapoor is totally Bindaas: Amyra Dastur – If Rajma Chawal was being made with a Parsi backdrop, Amyra Dastur jokes that it would have been named Dhansak! “Since it’s set in Delhi, which everyone knows is a foodie’s paradise, it’s called Rajma Chawal — a dish that brings everyone together,” she reveals, about the movie that sees her starring alongside veteran actor Rishi Kapoor and debutant Aniruddh Tanwar. “It’s a sweet story about acceptance, love and loss,” she says. Next up, she also has Mental Hai Kya, Made In China and Prassthanam to look forward to. After Hrs caught up with the actress, who’s eager to prove that she’s here to stay…
How was it working with a veteran actor like Rishi Kapoor?
In every scene, I seem to be having a showdown with him (laughs). Luckily, I got to meet and interact with him before we started shooting. When we did the scenes, it was quite easy because it was like working with someone familiar. He reminds me of my dad. Rishiji is so Punjabi and my father is really, really Parsi.
They are around the same age group as well. I was always cautious around Rishiji but he is so funny! He’s very bindaas. He says anything that comes to his mind and I really like that about him.
You shaved your hair partially for the role. How did your family react to that?
I love troubling my mother. It’s pure joy because she gets so hyper! (laughs) I’d told my dad about the haircut and even sent him a picture, but had asked him to not to tell my mum about it. My mother freaked out when she saw me! She didn’t even know if it was for a shoot or I had just cut my hair. She was screaming at me for 15 minutes. It was so much fun. My dad was pretty cool. He said, ‘It’s good because now boys will stay away from you, so I don’t have to worry for another year!’ (laughs) I actually miss it now. It was so badass!
You’ve worked with Rajkummar Rao in Mental Hai Kya and Made In China, too. How was the equation with him?
Rajkummar has become a friend now. He’s so easy to work with. He’s somebody who’s not from the industry but he’s made it here and that’s so inspirational.
Has it been a learning experience to work with talented actors like Rishi Kapoor, Rajkummar Rao and Sanjay Dutt etc?
Definitely. Acting is about reacting, and it’s not easy to do that when you don’t have a good co-star. These actors are phenomenal. They just switch on and off. Here I will be sitting in a corner, trying hard to not forget my lines and these guys just flip a switch, it’s insane! So, you have to bring your A-game. If you don’t step up, you will look like a fool. At the end of the day, I don’t want people to say, ‘the others were so good, why did they choose Amyra?’.
You started your career with Issaq in 2013, but while you did Tamil and Telugu films in between, there was a sort of lull when it came to Bollywood. Do you think that with four Hindi movies up for release, people will take notice of you?
Definitely. I’m glad I did South films because I feel they have moulded me. They are really loud and are in a different language, so it’s not easy. There too, I have acted with actors such as Dhanush. If I didn’t have my two years in South, I don’t think I would have been doing the films I’m doing today.