Posted on August 7, 2023 at 1:15 pm

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Manasvi Mamgai on Life’s Coincidences that Led to her Role in ‘The Trial’

Making her OTT Debut in Disney+ Hostar’s ‘The Trial’, Manasvi Mamgai spoke with us about her journey from Miss India 2010, to working with both Kajol and Ajay Devgn in separate acting projects. 

Manasvi Mamgai
Photo credit to Manasvi Mamgai’s Instagram

Manasvi’s entrance into the pageant world was one of destiny and coincidences, especially since she grew up in Chandigarh, which at the time was far away from the fashion and entertainment industries. 

“My mom was into Art of Living, and one of the teachers, her name is Rhea Pillai, she used to be a super model in India. My mom was like, you know my daughter loves to act and loves to dance. And she was like, let me see who I can connect with.”

Manasvi started her career in the fashion industry at 17, which at the time was pathbreaking, since the entertainment industry was difficult for newcomers to break into. 

“It’s about who you meet, and who was in your circle and who saw you. How does a girl from Chandigarh get into entertainment, like it was kind of unheard of.” 

In 2010, Manasvi won the Miss India pageant, since then, she explains that the pageant industry, and its ability to open doors to the entertainment industry has changed. 

“It was a huge thing, it was possibly the only way to enter the entertainment industry [at the time] if you were an outsider … so it was a huge thing to win a pageant.”

Now, while pageants can give someone a platform to join the entertainment industry, it’s up to them to use that chance to their benefit. 

Manasvi Mamgai
Photo credit to Manasvi Mamgai’s Instgram

Manasvi debuted in Bollywood in 2014 with the film ‘Action Jackson’, starring Ajay Devgn, and she couldn’t believe the coincidence when found out that she would then be working with Kajol 7 years later in ‘The Trial’. 

In the series, Manasvi plays the role of Juhi Bhatia, who is Kajol’s character’s client in the courtroom. Since this was her first time acting in a television series, Manasvi explained the process behind filming scenes for OTT shows. 

“I’ve always grown up in series’ because you kind of grow with these characters, and they stay with you, and there’s so much more that you can do with it as an actor.”

Manasvi’s experience working with Kajol was nothing short of a dream. 

“There’s a saying that the more successful you are, the more humble you are, and it cannot be more true [for Kajol].”

Even though Manasvi had worked with Ajay Devgn, Kajol had no idea that she had been cast in ‘The Trial’ until the pair met on set. 

“So she sees me, and she ‘s like ‘Oh my god, this is you.’ And there’s a very famous song that I did with Ajay Devgn, so she starts singing the song on sets … pulling my legs, [and it was] just so amazing.” 

Before entering into films, Manasvi performed in theater shows and plays, and she explains that there is a huge difference in acting before the camera, versus on a stage for a live audience. 

“They are completely different mediums … theater needs tons of rehearsals because you can’t mess up, it’s one take, right? And then also, it’s more theatrical.”

She goes on to explain that in films you might not need as many rehearsals, since you can film the scene as many times as necessary.

“You can give like five versions of something, and then you don’t know what version they’re [the editing team] are gonna use. So you get more freedom to perform.” 

Manasvi Mamgai
Photo credit to Manasvi Mamgai Instagram

For ‘The Trial’, most of Manasvi’s shots were filmed in the courtroom, and the camera was panned close-up, as she had to cry for a majority of her scenes. She revealed that crying during acting is one of the hardest emotions for her to capture, and create in front of the camera. 

“You have to recreate that emotion over and over again, and you can’t cry on cue, I haven’t gotten to that place where I can cry on cue.” 

Manasvi asked Kajol whether she had any advice about how to cry immediately for a scene, and Kajol told her that much of that ability comes from muscle memory that develops over time. 

Mansvi praised director Suparn Verma, who has also directed the acclaimed show ‘The Family Man’, for understanding that she might not be able to recreate the same crying emotion for 20 separate takes. 

“That’s why a good director comes in handy, because they understand somebody who’s done this kind of body of work and been doing this for a while. They understand that an actor cannot produce the same emotion 20 times.” 

‘The Trial’ released on Disney+ Hotstar on July 14th, and has opened to great reviews! 


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