Actor Sanya Malhotra, who portrayed the character of wrestler Babita Phogat in Aamir Khan-starrer Dangal, seems to be basking in the glory of her debut film, even after four months of its release. While her on-screen sister Fatima Sana Shaikh is already making a lot of noise for her future projects, Sanya says she is enjoying this phase doing nothing. “I have a lot of free time—I hit the gym and then I read. I recently went for a Bungee jumping too. I am reading a few scripts but I have not locked anything yet,” says Sanya, who is least bothered about those who still compare her with Fatima.
Both Sanya and Fatima had auditioned for wrestler Geeta Phogat’s role in the biopic [on wrestler Mahavir Phogat] but that never lead to any ego clash. Ask Sanya if she ever saw Fatima as competition, and prompt comes a reply, “I’m not competitive at all. During auditions [for the same role], Fatima and I got so close. Not for once we thought that the other person should not get the role, rather we used to help each other. We wanted either of us to bag that role and fortunately, we both got to be a part of the film. We bonded like sisters.”
Sanya shares how people often provoked her saying that she doesn’t have as much screen space as Fatima, but the actor says she never really cared. “I was even told why I was wasting my time and energy rehearsing so much when I didn’t have those many scenes [as compared to Fatima]. Bahut sunne ko milta tha but maine kabhi bother nahi kiya. Bahut ajeeb lagta tha ki log bol kyun rahe hain. After all, I’m an actor and if I want to prepare for the role, let me do it. It’s my job,” she says.
The fact that Sanya had just a two-minute wrestling scene in the film yet she learnt all the tricks of wrestling, and the actor explains, “I was not thinking in that direction at all. I had my character, Babita, in mind and she was a wrestler. So to play her on-screen, I had to first look like a wrestler—the way they walk, stand on the mat, eat and behave. Agar main practice nahi karti toh normally apni tarah khadi hoti and not like a wrestler.”
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