I was becoming complacent and unhappy, says Richa Chadha
Richa Chadha says she has always strived to do roles that challenge her as an actor but there was a time in her career when she felt uninspired.
The actor decided to take time off work to reflect on what was important for her as an artiste.
"There was time when I felt bored as an actor. In the middle, I took six months off, I tried to write, learn music, travel, sketch. It was a time when I would go on sets and the director would say, 'You are a good actress, you will do it'. I was hungry to learn but I was becoming complacent and unhappy.
"In the middle of last year, I got my energy back as I was getting good scripts. It was great working with Ajay Bahl on 'Section 375', he really pushed me. I have done another film, which I can't talk about, where the director pushed me to give my best," Richa told PTI in an interview here.
Richa, who has worked in films such as "Our Lucky! Lucky Oye!", "Gangs of Wasseypur", "Masaan", "Main Aur Charles", "Goliyon Ki Rasleela Ram Leela" and "Fukrey", says they all have been learnings in some way or the other.
"These kind of risks are interesting for me. They give me life. I want to do interesting work, I don't want to get boxed. A box is fruitful for a little while and then you get replaced," she said.
Omumg Kumar's "Sarbjit", which featured Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Randeep Hooda in lead roles, is the one film that Richa regrets doing.
"It pushed my career back. I was left with one speaking scene in the film and people questioned that. There are films that have not done well commercially and critically that I have taken as lessons. I learnt a lot from the directors with whom I have worked like Sudhir Mishra in 'Daas Dev', Prawaal Raman in 'Main Aur Charles'. The films that I regret are those that are forgotten."
Besides films, the 35-year-old actor says she is happy with her work on the digital medium - Amazon Prime Video's "Inside Edge".
There are offers for more streaming shows but she does not want to do anything that is of inferior quality.
"I get a lot of offers from the web but I don't want to do anything lesser than 'Inside Edge'. I mostly say no to other stuff because people use that excuse of not having censorship, they want to put in more sex and violence. I want quality over quantity," she adds.
Her next release is "Panga", directed by Ashwini Iyer Tiwari, whose work Richa says she has loved immensely and it was one of the reasons she decided to be a part of the film. It also gave her a chance to learn kabbadi.
"I was excited for the film as I will get to learn something new, somebody else will pay for it and someone will get me good coaches, I will train a lot more, get some muscles. Besides, I like Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari and her films and I thought it will be interesting to do this film."
Richa plays the role of a Kabbadi player, her character Meenu plays Kangana Ranaut's on-screen friend.
"Panga" also starring Jassi Gill and Neena Gupta in pivotal roles, is slated to release on January 24. The film is produced by Fox Star Studios.