“We never discuss politics on a film set and it really does not matter as an individual which political ideology we subscribe to. I am not here to change anyone’s beliefs and what their politics are. Everyone has their own beliefs and I am vocal about things that I strongly believe in,” Richa said.
She continued: “When it comes to ‘Panga’, we were making a film. We did that peacefully, professionally and in sync with the vision of the director. And there is no doubt about the fact that Kangana is a brilliant actress.”
For Richa, professionalism counts. “I am someone who has worked in films with different actors and when we actors work in a film, we all come together professionally to put our effort to make a film, tell a story. That is the intention and in ‘Panga’, too. Kangana and I came as two professionals acting in a film. It is that simple,” she explained.
Directed by Ashwini Iyer Tiwari and produced by Fox Star Studios, the film features Jassi Gill, Neena Gupta, child actor Yagya Bhasin along with Kangana and Richa.
Sharing an insight of her character in the film, Richa said: “I would say that it is an important story of two female kabbadi players and their lives. My character Meenu plays from defence position and Kangana’s character Jaya is a star offender. After having a successful journey in the game of kabaddi, Jaya settles for a family life with husband and child. Meenu continues to play the game. When Jaya decides to get back to the game, Meenu encourages and pushes her to get into fitness, regular training and do everything to prepare her for the game. It is the journey of Jaya and how Meenu supports her.”
The film is a sports drama, and Richa says they had to train in order to get the body-language right as kabaddi players.
“We trained under international coaches and it was tough. We got hurt at times but I enjoyed the process, because I am always eager to learn something new. I learnt kabaddi through ‘Panga’,” said the actress.
The film is directed by Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari, who carved her space with past efforts as ‘Nil Battey Sannata‘ and ‘Bareilly Ki Barfi‘. Richa encapsulate her experience of working with the director as refreshing.
“Ashwini is a wonderful storyteller and she has her own style of filmmaking. I watched both of her films and I found ‘Nil Battey Sannata’ very unusual and interesting. Ashwini is unique in the way she writes characters in films it is very well edged-out. I wanted to work with a female director and it was refreshing,” Richa signed off.
‘Panga’ releases on January 24.