Learning to take a joke on herself from father Chunky Panday, Ananya hopes to showcase her comic side with debut series, Call Me Bae
Although Ananya Panday has tasted success with Dream Girl 2, her desire to perform comedy on screen is yet to be fulfilled. Admitting that comedy is a difficult genre to crack and that she could only react to it in the Ayushmann Khuarrana-starrer, she says, “I was part of a situational comedy in Dream Girl 2. I was reacting to everything around me, so I cannot take credit for that. However, in Call Me Bae, I will be doing more comedy.”
The Amazon Prime Video series, announced earlier this year, marks Ananya’s debut in digital entertainment. The Dharmatic production revolves around a wealthy fashionista who is eschewed by her family owing to a controversy. For the first time in her life, she is left to fend for herself while navigating stereotypes and prejudice.
It’s a trade practice for people in the genre to be able to laugh at themselves before laughing at someone else. Ananya put this practice to use on the set of Call Me Bae. “Sometimes we overthink things like, ‘If we make this face, we will look silly. If we try to improvise, it will not come out correct.’ I believe comedy is about being uninhibited with being silly and willing to make a fool of yourself,” says Ananya, adding that it was also an advice she received from dad Chunky Panday.
Daddy dearest also taught Ananya to take criticism in her stride, a feat that is difficult to cultivate for many actors as they are perpetually under public scrutiny. “I think it comes naturally to me and has become a part of my personality. Dad and I are quite similar. We like that people around us like us and laugh with us. And sometimes [even] at our expense. I think I have developed that thick skin seeing my dad,” shares the actor, adding that there are days when jibes hurt her. “Sometimes, I don’t take a joke as well as I would have on any other day because I am only human. But being in the industry makes you grow stronger.”