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“Playing myself was most challenging”

Saie Tamhankar speaks to Ananya Swaroop about her recently released web series, the Marathi Original, Date With Saie, her love for intense and catchy characters and more

What was it like to work with director Dyanesh Zoting and co-actor Rohit Kokate?

I had worked with Dyanesh Zoting earlier, when we did Rakshas, and we became thick friends. We’ve been friends since then and he knows my personal preferences. That’s why he included things I wanted to do in the series, like action sequences and stuff like that. It’s fun when friends are directors. And what can I say about Rohit Kokate? I think Rohit has outdone me. I think he is a very intense, very raw actor. I can’t wait to work with him again, so that I can outdo him!

What was challenging about this role? 

I think the most challenging part of this role was playing myself. To be myself and to portray what I am in front of the camera is very difficult. When you play yourself, you don’t really keep secrets any more; you are what you are. So that was pretty challenging as it is eventually up to you to decide how much you want the audience to know about you and what part of your life you want to hide from them. We have come very close to what happens in my life.

What parts of your life have come in handy while playing this role?

My mother plays the role of my mother in the series. There is a housewarming party scene in one of the episodes, where all my friends from the industry have come to the party. They are my really close friends. Girija Oak, Lalit Prabhakar, all these guys are really thick friends. So I think my friends’ circle, my family, what I drink, what I eat, all these things are in the open now. There used to be this wall between me and my fans, it’s not there now. It’s a direct connection and I feel blessed.

What attracted you most about the script? 

The genre of the series caught my attention. It is a very generic idea. It is not really unique and it is certainly not rocket science. But the way it has been presented is very interesting and very relatable, also because it is about a public figure and a stalker. Stalking, trolling and things like these have become a part of our lives. So this web series is a kind of reminder to everyone to be alert, especially those who are constantly in the public gaze. 

You’ve worked in films, TV serials and now you’ve done a web series. Which one is your favourite platform?

It is very difficult to choose. But since I have done more films, I will say films. But, you know, the web is also a very interesting format to explore. There is no censorship, you have the freedom to explore characters, scripts, in technical ways. You can choose how you want to use it and what you want to create. I think it is amazing. So, I would say films but I would also love to do some more work in the web space. This is my debut in the digital world.

What’s next for you? 

You will see me in a Bollywood project soon and a couple of Marathi films which will go on the floors as well. I always try to do something different, something new. I love to do intense and edgy characters.

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