Candid chat with Sayani Gupta

Film and web actor, Sayani Gupta, who plays one of the leads in Amazon Prime’s Four More Shots Please!, is not apologetic about the sexual content of this tale of four SOBO women.

“It is very important to show real women. Let’s face it; we too want to have sex, apart from other things in life. Sadly, till now, women even in films, forget TV which is very regressive, were very uni-dimensional. Either they were virginal women who would just wait for their men or were bad women.”

“One of the most positive feedbacks of this Anu Menon-directed series has been women thanking us for showing how they live their lives. It also encourages many others to throw away the shackles of patriarchy and be free. On the flip side, there is this constant question asking whether smoking, drinking and getting laid means empowerment. Agreed it is not, but that is what many urban women do. What is wrong in showing the truth?” says this FTII graduate, who was first noticed with Margarita With A Straw and Leeches.

“Here, I wish to add that while sex is an important part of the Four More Shots Please narrative, it is not the only part. There were several other layers as well. My ethical, old-school journo character, Damini Rizvi Roy, is the most complex of the lot if you add her commitment-phobic personality to her strong world view. For me, meat and variety in what my characters do is of most importance. No wonder I have strong and unique avatars in all my cinema and web outings.”

Coming back to Four More Shots, she added, “Even the characters of other leads, except for bisexual Umang (VJ Bani) are multi-dimensional, for example Anjana (Kirti Kulhari) is trying to balance between being a mother and a woman.”

Sayani attributes the show’s lack of nudity as quite normal and the channel’s call. “Amazon (Inside Edge) does not allow for the same as Netflix does”. Looking ahead, she would not mind going dare-bare if the character demands and “I agree with the sensibilities of the makers.”

So what’s next? “Apart from Inside Edge 2 and a Bengali flick, I also have a Saregama film, Axone, where I play a Nepalese character, along with a British TV series (ITV), The Good Karma Hospital, shot in Sri Lanka, so I have a lot to look forward to this year,” added she.

In closing, Sayani does admit that if Fan and Jagga Jasoos had clicked at the Box Office, her Bollywood career would have been at a different level. “I did get lots of name and fame, courtesy Jolly LLB 2, by the same yardstick.”

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