On Republic Day as The Test Case was all set to hit social media, I caught up with Nimrat Kaur and director Vinay Waikul for a heart-to-heart talk about the web series, army in general, controversies surrounding the first episode and lots more. Excerpts from the interview...
I still have fond memories of the first episode of The Test Case. The show was rated as one of the best to have been made with the backdrop of the Indian army. However, right after one episode was aired, the show got almost shelved.
There were talks about how there were creative differences between director Nagesh Kukunoor and producer Ekta Kapoor, which was when Vinay Waikul stepped in to direct the remaining episodes. Finally, the show is back on Alt Balaji.
So without further ado, let's talk more about the show with the lead cast Nimrat Kaur and the director Vinay Waikul. Excerpts:
Vinay, why was the show stalled after the first episode?
I came on-board when the first episode was getting shot. There were some logistical and budget issues, and during this break we fixed all those, and now we are back with new episodes.
The first episode was directed by Nagesh Kukunoor. Were there creative differences because of which he moved out?
No. There were no creative differences. He was to direct the first episode, which he did fabulously. And then I came in from episode two.
Nimrat, when there is a change of directors in between the season, does that affect the character an actor is portraying?
When I said yes to the show, I had already done the Hollywood show Homeland. And that had a new director every episode. Thus there I was in a much more unpredictable environment every episode than I was here on The Test Case. But this unpredictability is something that keeps you going. I don't mind it, really.
You too have an army background...
I remember watching my father getting ready very, very clearly. I know the exact sequence – the uniform, lacing up the shoes. I have a very romantic picture of army life because I saw some of my best days as an army kid.
Did you speak to Vinay and get things added in the character which you knew from your personal army experience?
(Laughs in affirmation while looking at Vinay) I hope, I was not irritating. Environmentally it's a very natural habitat for me as I have grown up in that. There was nothing that I had to add from my personal experience, just that I could see a lot of characters on the sets and feel that this person looks like that uncle I know, etc.
Nimrat, in your growing up years, did you ever want to join the army?
Of course, it was my dream. But then as I grew up, I came to know the kind of difficulties associated with being in the army.
What is the similarity between Capt. Shikha Sharma and Nimrat Kaur?
I think the one similarity is that both of us don’t like being told, ‘You can’t do this’. I’ve come from a background where I have attempted everything that came to my mind.
What about the differences?
I don't have courage even a bit like she has (Laughs). I am not that much of a daredevil.
I saw the first episode of The Test Case on the AltBalaji app. So, let’s straight away touch upon the topics that were explored in the first episode:
- Feminism, are you a feminist?
Yes I am. I now understand the term feminism a lot better than I did some time back. I think feminism should not be understood as a male-bashing sentiment. The idea is not that all men are evil and all women are amazing. It’s misunderstood. Feminism to me is courage, standing up for your dreams, believing in yourself – it has nothing to do with gender.
- Girl child Vs Male Child
I love little girls. And people who don’t want a girl child need serious education and counselling.
I think sexists need to be treated with as little importance as possible and women should never be intimidated or affected by their comments because I honestly feel that they come from uneducated and silly places.
- Sexual harassment
There’s no place for sexual harassment anywhere. I feel it's a very unfortunate part of life. It's something that prevails in every environment.
Nobody has escaped trolls and indecent comments on social media. Do trolls bother you?
What sort of differences do you find between the sets of Hollywood production and that of a Bollywood one?
Time and discipline.
I loved your performance in the short film from Love Shots, but has Nimrat Kaur found love in real life?
Thank you for the compliment. And secondly, NO (Laughs). I haven't found love yet
. It's so happened that every time I came out of a relationship, I used to think that that person was the love of my life. But now when I go back and see now, I feel that I have never been in love (Laughs). Even when I am doing a romantic scene, and the director says to take things from personal experience, I just keep pondering because I have never been in true love (Laughs).
After The Test Case?
I am working on finding love (Laughs).
Image Source: instagram/nimrat_kaurfc