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'Peddha Kapu' helped me explore my talent: Pragathi Srivastava


Pragathi Srivastava has a leading role in Srikanth Addala-directed 'Peddha Kapu: Part 1'. The film, starring debutant Virat Karrna as the male lead, will hit the cinemas on September 29. In this interview, the budding actress says that she has always wanted to explore a key role in a village-based film. "It's a crucial part that I have played," she says, suggesting that she is a protagonist.

I was not given the entire narration in one go. I was left in suspense. An element of suspense hangs over the story, actually. 'Manu Charitra' is my first Telugu film; I shot for it before the Covid-19 pandemic. I must say 'Peddha Kapu' is my re-introduction to Telugu cinema.

Director Srikanth Addala has done some brilliant movies. His sensibility is unique. I was excited about bagging 'Peddha Kapu' and felt that it would be the best platform for me to explore.

I have just started out. I want to experiment and try variety in terms of looks, costumes, and body language. When I wore a half-saree, certain gestures came out automatically. My character in 'Peddha Kapu' has a brain of her own. She experiences a range of emotions as the story advances.

I grew up in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh. I grew up in other places as well owing to the nature of my dad's job. I had the opportunity to learn through observation. I learn by observing others' body language.

I never wanted to be an actor. People started noticing me, thanks to some of my TV appearances. I was studying Public Policy. When I started out working in the entertainment sector, it was fun and an escape kind of thing. Slowly, I realized that it was a very nice place to be in. The freedom on offer excited me.

We did an acting workshop before the film was taken to floors. We tried costumes and had a sense of how we would look. The director gave me enough insights about the character. The major challenge during the shoot was the heat we had to encounter.

I admire the filmography of Samantha Ruth Prabhu, Taapsee Pannu, Trisha Krishnan. I admire their script selections. There was a time when I didn't know I could be an actor. A talent agency I was associated with felt that I could do it. I took up acting without any preparation. My instinct told me I should go for it.

At this point, I really want to do family films with strong emotions. I would not do a role that my father wouldn't like to watch. Initially, my father didn't take to my career choice favorably. Slowly, he has made an adjustment.

I have so many favorites in Telugu cinema. I like Varun Tej because he is so tall. I also admire Ram Charan, who was awesome as Chitti Babu in 'Rangasthalam'. Prabhas is another actor I adore.

I am currently doing 'Gam Gam Ganesha', starring Anand Deverakonda as the hero. I will decide on my future choices after 'Peddha Kapu' comes out.

Updated on September 25, 2023