Debutante Vaishnavi Chaitanya is kicked about 'Baby' ahead of the release on July 14. In this interview, she talks about her background, how bagging 'Baby' changed her thinking, her future plans, and more.
'Baby', which is about the purity of first love, is expected to feature an unpredictable climax.
I have been a YouTuber, a character artist, and a social media influencer. 'Baby' is my first feature film as a lead actress. I learned Kuchipudi and other dance forms. During a dance performance, I came across a casting call. I contacted the number on the poster and started giving auditions. I am from Old City in Hyderabad. Given my basti background, it was tough for me. I also faced financial issues.
I stepped into the film industry to become a heroine. It took me eight years to realize the dream after multiple setbacks. My previous assignments were meant to be stepping stones to realizing the eventual goal. When I got a call from director Sai Rajesh's office, I was zoned out due to surprise. I finally found a platform to project my talent. The offer came my way when I had lost confidence in myself. The director must have discovered me thanks to one of my Instagram reels/videos.
After listening to the script of 'Baby', I forgot everything, including my background. I knew that it was an opportunity that gave me the scope to showcase my acting talent. This is the greatest thing that could have happened to me.
Any artist wants to become a lead actor someday. We all try to bag lead roles despite all the odds that come our way. My abilities were under-estimated by everyone around me. I was flooded with negativity. I became insecure. I started harbouring self-doubts. I almost came to the conclusion that I was destined to be a social media influencer and nothing more. It was director Sai Rajesh who first told me I had the ability to pull off the challenging role in 'Baby'.
I played a naive, basti girl in 'Baby'. Once she gets to step out of the basti, her life undergoes transformation both in positive and negative ways. What lessons does she learn in the process? That's what her journey is about. She becomes friends with a male collegemate (Viraj Ashwin) in the city. His life, too, gets impacted in the process.
I could relate to my character. I am not saying that all lives in the real world mirror the situations depicted in 'Baby'. There was a phase in my life when I used to be naive like my character in the film, which is intense. Every character has a certain span and range. I had to keep the constraints in mind while essaying the part. It was a task. 'Baby' has been my world for the past three years.
Girls living in slums don't use beauty products. Similarly, my character doesn't do skincare. When she moves to the city, she becomes beauty-conscious under the influence of her peers. Self-care is what it is about. It's not about the film being colour-conscious. When I was a school-goer, I was unfashionable.
I, Anand Deverakonda and Viraj used to discuss our scenes before enacting. It was a collaborative effort.
As of now, I have not committed myself to any new film. I want to wait and watch. I come from a humble background and I need to constantly assess my strengths so that I don't take missteps.