Shriyam Bhagnani is a rising actress in Bollywood, dedicated to creating her own path in the industry despite being from a family grounded in entertainment. We had a chat with her about her journey to establishing herself in Bollywood.
1. What sparked your interest in acting?
Earlier days in school and college, experiencing being on stage for the first time sparked my interest in acting. It was in that moment of getting on stage as that character, when I knew I had found my ikigai.
2. Tell us all about the role you’ve landed on a web series directed by Nagesh Kukunoor? What’s the show about?
I wish I could tell you everything about my role but that would only translate to as me giving you spoilers for the existing viewers of the show. You’ll know all about it soon. One thing I can say is I’ve had a great experience working with the entire team on this one.
3. How have you been gaining experience in the film industry?
I have been working in the industry assisting in several departments on set and doing character roles and ads since 2017 and I’ve come to realize, the more you see, the lesser you know. I may want to call my previous three years an experience, but it’s also nothing but basic knowledge that every actor must possess – to understand every aspect of film making to elevate the scene by being in sync with everyone around them.
4. How have you been spending time in lockdown?
The lockdown was an extended vacation I never applied for! I love working so it was a sort of setback for me there. But I used the time to learn how to do nothing and then started to learn how to draw. It was something I’d always wanted to do but had always used a stick figure for a human, hopefully I’m better now.
Professionally, I’ve been working on my craft and have been constantly auditioning for several projects.
5. What’s the shift from Kolkata to Mumbai been like? What do you think of the city?
I moved to Mumbai with my family so a huge part of my world from Kolkata came to Mumbai with me. So in that sense, I was very fortunate. But having said that, both these cities were completely different – the cultures, the people, the pace! Adapting to that, was a little difficult in the beginning, only because it was a new way of being for me. Now, having lived here for almost 6 years, I don’t think there’s any other city I’d rather be in than Mumbai. It truly is the city of dreams.
6. Do you have any exciting upcoming projects to look forward to?
I am currently shooting for Nagesh sir’s show. And I am also currently auditioning for newer parts which I can only talk about once finalized.
7. How has being connected to a film family impacted your career?
Even though being from a film family hasn’t impacted my career in a tangible way, for I have been playing the field like an outsider, I do believe I was inspired by my uncle’s entry into the industry as an outsider and really having made strong roots here in the last few decades. Having grown up watching his journey made me believe I could dream to have my own journey someday.
8. Name a movie and an actor you could never get tired of.
I could never get tired of watching Harry Potter! The series transports me into a magical world. I found myself falling in love with it again in the pandemic when all on needed was an escape!
An actor I can watch forever is Anne Hathaway!
9. What are your goals for the foreseeable future?
The goal is to play as many characters as I can and the hope is to be able to achieve that.
10. If you could collaborate with anyone on a project, who would it be?
Amitabh Bachchan, in an Ayan Mukherji film! *sighs*