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Tanisha Santoshi: It took a lot of convincing

Updated on: 15 January,2023 07:20 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Hiren Kotwani |

Rajkumar Santoshi’s daughter discusses appeasing him with audition videos for a role in Gandhi-Godse: Ek Yudh after director refused to launch her

Tanisha Santoshi: It took a lot of convincing

Tanisha Santoshi

Unlike the star kids of the film industry, Rajkumar Santoshi’s daughter Tanisha had no acting aspirations. Certain that she wanted to explore a career in direction, she set off to London to pursue her bachelor’s degree in direction and screenwriting from the London College of Communication, to eventually follow in the footsteps of her filmmaker father. However, four years ago, she had a change of heart. The youngster does intend to pursue a career in direction, but only after first spending some time before the cameras, giving wings to her acting aspirations.  

After assisting her father in films like 'Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani' (2009) and 'Phata Poster Nikhla Hero' (2013), she takes her place before the cameras to star in her father’s upcoming directorial venture, 'Gandhi-Godse: Ek Yudh'. “I knew my father was working on this interesting subject. I heard the script when he was narrating it to someone else, and I wanted to be part of the film,” recalls the debutante, who first broached the subject with her mother Manila, who is a producer on the movie. “Mom said I should speak to my father, who rejected the idea stating that he would not be launching me.” It took a lot of convincing before he realised I was serious about acting and playing this role.” 

A still from Gandhi-Godse: Ek YudhA still from Gandhi-Godse: Ek Yudh

In a bid to prove her merit, she filmed and recorded videos, and shared them with him, because he doesn’t believe in auditioning actors for movies. “He casts actors based on his conversations with them and gauges if they can convincingly essay the roles.”

The period drama revolves around the conflict between Mahatma Gandhi and Nathuram Godse, and is said to be contra-factual, born of the idea that the former survives the assassination attempt by the latter, and meets him in prison. The track of Sushma that Santoshi junior plays is also fictional. Ask her if she is worried her role will be forgotten in the narrative that focuses primarily on the two protagonists, and she says, “I’m not worried about that because people who have seen the film have asked my father for details of the actor who plays the part. For me, that is a compliment, and so, I am certain that I won’t go unnoticed in the movie.” 
She is further assured of the role, given that her character is instrumental in bringing about a change in Gandhi. “I play a crucial role in [changing] the dynamics between Gandhi and Godse; due to this, they begin to understand each other, even if in a small way.”

Also Read: Anuj Saini to make his Bollywood debut with 'Gandhi Godse-Ek Yudh'

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