Shivani Rajasekhar awaits the release of 'Adbhutham' on November 19 on Hotstar. Starring Teja Sajja as the hero, it is directed by Mallik Ram. In this interview, the debutante actress talks about her character, her journey in the industry, her future plans, and more.
Despite being a star kid, I have had my struggles in the film industry. Since a child, I have been moving among film personalities. It helped me approach people for offers. I and my sister have faced a lot of rejections while doing auditions. '2 States' was supposed to be my debut movie but it got stalled due to some issues. It caused me pain because it was shaping up really well. I started a Tamil movie with Vishnu Vishal as the hero. He got busy with other projects and was also not able to complete the film because of a back injury. The project got shelved. This is when 'Adbhutham' came my way.
'Adbhutham' is produced by Chandrasekhar garu, who is the owner of a popular gym franchise. He also trained my father in gymming. I came to know about his plans to produce a movie with Teja Sajja as the hero. It was during the making of 'Kalki' that I requested writer Prasanth Varma, saying I want to play the heroine. A look test was done. Later, I auditioned for the character Vennela. The story is superb and it gave me scope to perform.
It was in January 2020 that 'Adbhutham' was completed. By the time we started planning for its theatrical release, Covid-19 happened. The release then got delayed due to the second wave. I was mildly depressed due to the repeated postponements. My parents stood by me and gave me a morale booster.
I am doing two Tamil movies. The first one is a remake of 'Article 15' (Hindi) with Udayanidhi Stalin. It's a prestigious project. When I came to know about the remake, I requested the director and offered to audition. It's not easy to bag opportunities. People say they would like to consider but may not consider me for a variety of reasons. I am doing another Tamil movie with composer Hiphop Tamizha as the hero. Its production works are completed.
In Telugu, I am doing 'WWW' as well. Its release date is yet to be finalized. 'WWW' will be either an OTT release or a theatrical release. Suresh Productions owns its rights.
The teaser for 'Adbhutham' has raised curiosity. Many are comparing it with the recent 'Playback'. For a fact, our movie has nothing to do with 'Playback'. When you watch our movie, you will realize that the subject is unique. There is a twist every 15-20 minutes. There are surprises galore.
I am not so far inclined towards becoming a director or producer. We have a home banner and have been busy in some way or the other way this or that movie. When I am not occupied with acting assignments, I take care of my father's movies.
I have evolved as an actor since 2019. Each day has been a learning experience.
Producers/directors don't approach me and my sister for glamorous roles, given my family background. I want the filmmakers to know that I and my sister are ready to do any good role. Budget is not a criterion. Remuneration doesn't matter. We value the script. Our doors are always open. Please don't make assumptions about our parents saying no to our playing glamorous roles.
After 'Sekhar', my father will be doing a film under the direction of the maker of 'Gatham'.