A new talent from the northeast region, model and actor Fami Basumatary, landed her big Bollywood break in Tapsee Pannu-starrer Rashmi Rocket and has worked predominantly in the Indian film industry. She has previously played supporting roles in a couple of films and web shows like the Tamil film ‘Kavalai Vendam‘ and ‘Family Man 2‘.
In a candid conversation with EastMojo, Fami shares her experience working in the industry, the roles played by her and her views on ‘Rashmi Rocket‘.
Nilakshi: Do you think this production brings something new to the story of Rashmi Rocket?
Fami: Yes, it does. I believe, till date any sports drama I had watched is mostly about the athlete’s struggle to win the sport or the trophy. Sport movies mainly revolve around the protagonist’s background, their struggle story and their win at the end. However, the story of ‘Rashmi Rocket’ is not about winning the sport as the protagonist has always been a winner since the beginning in the movie.
The ultimate goal of the movie is a journey to prove that women do not have to have a conventional body type but train themselves to participate in a sport. It is to spread an awareness in order to win the oppression against gender testing. The protagonist, represents herself as the voice for all those women who are exploited and barred from achieving their dreams in the name of gender testing. It is a fresh concept based on a real story and a “differently special” film.
N: If you could play any other character in this show, who would it be?
F: If I could play any other character in the movie, I would definitely love to play the lead (easy laughing). But, I loved my role as ‘Fami’ because it was an authentic representation of someone from one of the Northeastern states that they wanted to represent in the movie. I couldn’t have had a more solid debut as an actress coming from a small town of Assam.
N: Who do you look up to as an actor?
F: I definitely look upto Shweta Tripathi Sharma as an actor. I not only relate to her based on our physical appearances, but the roles that she takes up are very strong yet challenging. I love how she is not just an arm-candy around but also carries depths and layers in the character she plays as an actress and in any the movies she has been a part of, all the characters have a strong backbone in itself.
N: What do you think makes a good scene partner?
F: According to me a good scene partner is the one who responds properly when asked about something and co-operates during a scene play. It is when the co-actor in the frame gives an authentic response, make equal progress, maintain a balance, and not actually dominate the spotlight. It is different when it comes to dominating roles.
N: What is your take or viewpoint on female athletes that not only face discrimination but also undergo exploitation in the name of gender testing?
F: It is true and I’m sure that training can make any man perfect. But we also have people on the planet who are naturally god gifted with talent and it only requires a bit of polishing to make it presentable to the audience. And naturally god gifted talents can be in both men and women.
In context of this movie, I’d like to say that one cannot simply say that a woman is weak, or question her capabilities because she wins a continuous streak of sport events. My take on this would be a question as why are is it always a woman but not a man being questioned on his skills and capabilities when he also wins trophies and medals back to back? I do not think men have to undergo or face any gender testing when it comes to them being naturally strong.
In short, there should be no discrimination and ill practices like gender testing should be terminated if they exist. A woman’s skills and capabilities should be accepted the same way like that of a man’s and we should be proud that our Indian women are bagging medals and trophies nationally and internationally in the sports events through hardwork which is very inspiring to everyone.
N: What was your biggest challenge about taking on this role?
F: Ah, I’m not a sporty person at all. Ever since my childhood, I have never been attracted to sports or took any interest to participate in one. The biggest challenge I faced about taking on this role is that I had to train myself to run like a professional runner in the act.
To wake up early morning and to train wearing knee caps after getting a leg injury in order to make myself run taking big leaps took me a lot of effort and courage. As I had already mentioned about my lack of taste in sports this was one of the biggest challenges for me to accomplish in the movie.
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