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22 January 2018

I was inebriated through the shooting of the intimate scene in One Night Stand – Nyra Banerjee

I was inebriated through the shooting of the intimate scene in One Night Stand - Nyra Banerjee

New girl on the block, Nyra Banerjee says she had no qualms playing second fiddle to the hotshot Sunny Leone in her debut movie One Night Stand. She says, “Sunny and my roles were distinct. So the thought of being overshadowed by her never crossed my mind.” When Nyra auditioned for the part, she was finalised in just one day. She admits to having her reservations after hearing the bold title of the movie. “I wasn’t keen. But since I was already selected, I decided to hear the script. I instantly liked the idea of telling the story from a woman’s perspective on gender equality, one night stands and infidelity in marriage,” she adds.

Directed by Jasmine D’Souza, One Night Stand (ONS) starred Rati Agnihotri’s son Tanuj Virwani along with Nyra and Sunny. “My character Simran was modern and independent. Yet she was a simple, homely wife. The role entailed me to portray a spectrum of emotions,” says Nyra. She doesn’t believe in perfect roles. Rather she welcomes opportunities that help her tap her skills. And ONS provided her just that.  

She may have worked in a film called One Night Stand but she doesn’t endorse the idea. She exclaims, “Gosh! What if he’s a psycho or has AIDS? What if he’s into hardcore sadomasochism or he loots me? I don’t think I can ever have a one-night stand.”

Nyra, who has a sweet tooth, enjoyed her time on the set of ONS. “It was a young team full of brats. That made the shoot enjoyable. I would punish the assistant directors if they made me wait too long for the shots. I’d make them drink bitter gourd juice and demand sweets and pastries in return,” she giggles and adds, “Loads of sugar goodies were kept aside for me on the set. One of the assistant directors actually sent me a huge blueberry cheesecake and chocolate ice-cream.”

There was a lot of bedroom action in the film and Nyra had cold feet. She reveals, “I was uncomfortable shooting the intimate scenes. Being surrounded by the crew made me nervous. I was absolutely mortified. I feared my mother would throw me out of the house.” To make matters worse, she had to deal with a hectic schedule as well. She had to shoot for the scenes at night and travel the next morning to Bangalore for her Kannada film Tiger. “Alcohol came to the rescue and I got drunk! I was inebriated through the shooting of the intimate scene. The crew then got me nimbu paani so I could make it to Bangalore for the early morning shoot the next day,” she laughs.

Nyra actually never wanted to be an actress. She studied law for five years at the Mumbai University. She considered several vocations other than acting. She shares, “Maybe I could’ve been a singer. I’d picked up bhajans, geet, ghazals, English songs, film songs and even Rabindra Sangeet and songs of Kazi Nazrul Islam (national poet of Bangladesh) from my mother. I want to be known as a singing star. I also love dancing.” She blames her Bengali roots for the proclivity towards music. “Being born in a Bengali family, music, dance and painting were inculcated in me right since childhood,” she says. Born in Mumbai, she spent parts of her childhood in Port Blair, Delhi and Kolkata because her father’s an officer in the Indian Navy. Her mother is a novelist. 

Like most girls her age, she had a massive crush on Salman Khan. “He’s my childhood love. I’m not ashamed to admit it even today,” she chuckles. She also admires her co-star Sunny Leone for her perseverance. “Also, Priyanka Chopra for her hard work and hunger to achieve more,” she smiles. Initially, she was wary like any other newcomer about making it in showbiz. “There was an unmistakable feeling of joy mixed with inhibitions and an initial fear of the unknown. But it has gradually settled down,” she claims. 

A lot more confident about her art today, Nyra is all set to start shooting for her next movie, Govind Sakariya’s Ram Bhai starring Sharman Joshi, Prem Chopra and Rajpal Yadav. 

All the best, girl.

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