Actor Rafiath Rashid Mithila who would be debuting in the Tollywood industry with the movie "Maya" is finally done with the shooting.
Directed by Raajhorshee De, the shooting of "Maya" commenced on 12 July and concluded at the end of the month.
The first look of the movie has been released and Mithila looks strong and fierce as the protagonist Maya in the film.
The Business Standard contacted Mihila to get to know more about the film and how she got into the skin of her character.
How did you feel while shooting outside the country?
I had a very satisfying experience working in Kolkata. It was a new place and there was everything I expected my debut film would thrive to be. I loved the script and had a lot of scope to act and showcase my skills through my role. I am glad I was able to use this opportunity to the fullest.
The name of your character in the film is 'Maya'. How is that character?
The story is based on Shakespeare's "Macbeth". You can also say it is inspired by "Macbeth". In my character "Maya," I have acted as a woman of three different age groups – 17-18 years old, 30 years old and 50 years old. I had to change my look a lot and it was very challenging for me.
The story is written from the perspective of women. Maya is actually the symbol of all women. Those who do not want to live in society with their head held high and want to move forward with determination towards their goals. This is what is shown in the whole story.
Many also know you as a determined woman. Did you find any similarities in your life with the character of Maya?
I will not say it matched perfectly. Maya's story is different. You will find similarities in the place of perseverance. I have come to this place after struggling a lot in my personal life. I have been a victim of cyber harassment many times. I may have been socially degraded, but was steadfast in my goal. I have had to struggle a lot since the time of my divorce. But, in the meantime, I continued my job, study and acting. I reared my child as a single mother. It is not that I do not get victimised by cyber bullying anymore. But, I will actually answer all this with my work. That is why I am working.
How were your co-stars in the movie?
Everyone I have worked with in this film are immensely talented. Kamaleshwar Mukherjee is a filmmaker whose film "Meghe Dhaka Tara" is one of my favourite movie. Of my other two co-artists, Sudipta Chakraborty is a national award winning artist while Tanusree Chakraborty is a very talented actor. We were a team of 17 artists and I am friend with everyone.
When will Maya come to the theaters?
Cinema halls in Kolkata have reopened at 50% capacity. If everything goes well, the director might release the movie this year.
How was your experience shooting in Kolkata? Is there any difference in shooting compared to your country?
There are many differences. For instance, from the beginning everyone from the director to the makeup artists and the director of photography (DOP) knows their work and everybody memorises the script so that they can remember each other's continuity.
I couldn't believe it that the shooting of the movie would end so soon. My call time was from 6.30-7.00 and I used to arrive in the sets before 7. The cameras would roll and I would start shooting for my scenes. The shooting would pack up by 9 and they would end up the shooting with sheer professionalism and perfection.
What were the two things that attracted you to play the role of Maya?
I was very tense during the shooting. I was really conscious about my body language and how would my character look like. Then when I finally shot my first scene and the directors applauded my performance it really removed my nervousness from the shooting.
Another thing that I liked about the shooting here is that initially the stylists and the makeup artists used to call me Mithila Di and then gradually they started to call me Mithila Apa or Apu. They even tried to talk the way we speak in Bengali so that I would feel at ease. They didn't even remind me for a second that this was my first time shooting here.
How did your husband react when he realised that you would be debuting in a Tollywood film?
Srijit is currently busy shooting his film in Bombay so he really doesn't know much about my shooting. Srijit is a film-maker and I personally didn't share the details with him as this might affect my decision. The funny thing is that the director got my number from one of my friends on Kolkata and instead of calling me he called Srijit on the phone and asked him "Can I contract with Mithila a little bit." Even Srijit didn't even had any clue about my character before the first day of shooting. I just made a video call from the set and showed him my look.
Did Srijit offer you any film?
Everybody asks me this question and honestly speaking I have not received any such offers and I don't know whether I will get one in the future as well.