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Transforming for the screen: Rashami Desai’s physical and mental preparation for diverse roles

Rashami Desai's physical and mental preparation for diverse roles

Acting as an art form is truly magical. Just change your look and attitude and you can literally be anyone on this planet. At the end of the day, it’s all about behaving truthfully under imaginary circumstances and no wonder, such an intriguing and exhausting task requires a great amount of preparation, mental strength, grit and the ability to push oneself beyond regular boundaries on a regular basis. To add to that, as far as the Indian entertainment industry is concerned, you need to have all these abilities alongside a fierce mindset to battle cut-throat competition and make it big. One diva who’s successfully made it big after years of toil and hard work is Rashami Desai. Over the years, Rashami Desai has literally proven her skills and mettle across different mediums and we love the way she has shun bright like a diamond to make it big. Be it her successful run of TV shows or movies and web projects or reality shows, Rashami Desai has always truly given her soul to everything that she’s undertaken. In fact, she’s one of those actresses in the country who made the word ‘Pan India’ look cool and tempting by working in different projects across different languages even at a time when the concept wasn’t popular. No wonder, she deserves a whole lot of credit for what she has become today and how.

While the diva often gets a lot of compliments for the ease with which she gets her craftsmanship going to blend into any character, not many have tried to understand the process for her behind it, be it the physical part or the mental part. So, when we asked Rashami about the same, she opened up and we quote,

“Well, as far as acting is concerned, every role might not need a physical transformation but every role certainly needs a lot of mental preparation. It’s all about playing up with your imaginations and taking yourself in a world that doesn’t exist. For that to happen, your mind needs to be immensely strong, especially because once the cameras are shut, you also got to come back to your real world. The characters you are playing may or may not have any similarity or resemblance to what you are in real life. But, the audience can’t know that as for them, that character is you and hence, you have to get deep into it. For me, I always look forward to preparing a character sketch and a backstory to understand the psyche of the character. Sometimes, you are given a backstory and sometimes you aren’t. Being a creative person, I sometimes create my own back stories for my own reference just to get the emotional quotient right. That’s why, a lot of those mental training and conditioning exercises that are taught in theatre are important. For me, I train and exercise my mind accordingly to get the idea right and once it gets going, it eventually becomes a part of your system and you adapt quicker. So yes, mental preparation is definitely mandatory for every role that I undertake. Just that some need a little more and some need a little less.”

Shedding more light on the physical transformation part of it, Rashami adds and we quote,

“While for me, the mental part of the preparation is a lot about your routine and work process before you go on set to shoot, the physical drill is something that remains constant throughout the entire process until that particular journey is complete. There are some roles where you need to be on the healthy side whereas some roles need you to lose weight. It can get gruesome to play around your weight but that’s where the expertise of actors come in. Personally, I am quite conscious about what I am eating and also focus on my workouts accordingly and as per the way I need to look. I personally find physical transformations more difficult. But then, the world has seen that I have done it and never shied away whenever there came a good opportunity. Also, I am a firm believer of practice. I train very highly for my vocals. My dialogues and diction need to always be on point and I am very particular about that. For example, I am born in one part of India but say if I am playing a character which is from the complete opposite part of where I am born, it can’t be identified in my linguistics. So for me, diction, voice, throw of speech and modulation is very critical and even today, I practice it whenever I can as it never goes for waste. So yes, these are some of the acting techniques and mechanisms I personally like to follow whenever I approach any character. Of course, this is what works for me and not necessarily everyone has to do it. But at the end of the day, my ultimate motive is that after a long day of shoot, my director should be happy about my work ethics and preparation and should never ever feel that I have taken things lightly. If that’s taken care of, I believe half the battle is won. I will tell young actors the same. Looks and grooming everything is fine but at the end, you are an actor who’s going to be known for the work you do. So, keep the basics sorted and the universe will take care of you.”

Well, truly golden words and notes of inspiration coming from the diva herself who has proven her expertise brilliantly over the years. She’s certainly one of the finest personalities to talk about these aspects since she’s been through the drill herself and no wonder, we resonate with everything that she said. On the work front, Rashami Desai has JNU and many other interesting projects happening at her end, the official announcements of which will take place soon as per the ideal timelines. Stay tuned for more updates.