Is how Shilpa Shukla describes her relationship in the erotic drama B.A. Pass
If you have watched Chak De! India, there is no way you would have forgotten her. Though she was part of an ensemble cast, Shilpa Shukla, who played the strong and arrogant Bindiya Nayak, made her mark in the movie. Shilpa after a few lows is now looking forward to her next film, B.A. Pass.
“Directed by Ajay Bahl, B.A. Pass is an erotic human drama that stars me and theatre actor, Shadab Kamal,” Shilpa says over the phone. “It is a story of a young boy who is seduced by a mysterious, married woman. Set amidst the neon-lit bylanes of Delhi’s Paharganj the story is youth-centric and revolves around a relationship based on lust, lies and deceit.”
Based on Mohan Sikka's short story The Railway Aunty, the film has been screened at many film festivals including the Montreal World Film Festival, New York Indian Film Festival and ImagineIndia Spain. B.A. Pass won the best film and best actor awards at Osian Cinefan film festival and was also voted the best film by the French audience in the South Asian Alternative Film Festival in Paris earlier this year.
Stating that the crux of the film is about the pressure that the youth has to go through to earn quick money and how they end up not knowing right from wrong, Shilpa says: “It is unfortunate how society feeds on the weak and how people lose purpose in life when money becomes a burden.”
Of her role in the film, Shilpa says: “I play Sarika, the married seductress who is in her early 30s. She’s beautiful, mysterious and is someone you cannot get very close to. She lives her life exactly the way she wants to and is instrumental in moulding the boy to sleep around.”
Ask her what drew her to a role and she says: “I read the script on my phone and at that time I wasn’t sure if I would do it. I didn’t think how much I would or wouldn’t do. I took this freefall that I would like to believe is an answered prayer as I was waiting for a role and script as meaningful and convincing as this.”
Did she have apprehensions about the intimate scenes the film called for? “Anyone would be a little sceptical but I knew that the story necessitated these scenes. Moreover, they’ve been shot aesthetically. After reading the script, I asked my mom if she would disown me if I accepted the role and she said she wouldn’t. But my father was the one who told me that I would succeed only if I was willing to take risks.” Of her co-star, Shilpa says: “Shadab is such a fabulous actor to work with. Since we both come with a theatre background, we found it easy to work together and that has translated on-screen too.”
Having been in the industry for about a decade now, she has learnt much. “I feel I’ve evolved only now as an actor as well as an individual. I’ve finally found closure with who and what I am.”
Looking ahead, she has The Coffin Maker with Naseeruddin Shah, Ratna Pathak Shah, Randeep Hooda and Benjamin Gilani. She’s also got a comedy project in her kitty. B.A. Pass will hit theatres on July 12.