Radhika Madan made her Bollywood debut with Vishal Bhardwaj’s ‘Pataakha’. She then went on to play the female lead in ‘Angrezi Medium’ with Irrfan Khan and Kareena Kapoor Khan. But Radhika started her career in 2014 with the TV show, ‘Meri Aashiqui Tum Se Hi’. Recently, the actor opened up to Humans of Bombay about the struggles she faced after quitting TV.
Radhika shared that while growing up she developed an interest in broadway but auditioned for ‘Meri Aashiqui Tum Se Hi’ at the age of 17. She successfully bagged the role of the female lead, Ishaani Parikh. Radhika further shares that due to lack of time and sleep she put on a little weight. But after hearing rumours of being replaced, she pushed herself ‘to explore my limits’.
“At 17, I auditioned for a TV show & within 3 days I was in Mumbai, shooting. But it was tough. I barely got time to sleep, which led to me gaining a few kilos. Then, I heard rumours about me getting replaced & that pushed me to explore my limits. So I began working out & lost myself to my character. And I realised, this is my high…this is what I want to do,” Radhika said.
She added, “I got more TV offers, but I told myself, ‘You’re only 19, if you choose comfort, you’ll get stuck.’ So, I quit TV to do films. I began auditioning, but I faced rejections.” Radhika shared that she didn’t get work for a long time and was told she needed to look a certain way and that she even needed surgery. But the actor found herself pretty, and that’s what mattered for her.
“I was told I needed to have a particular shape & size, & that I needed surgery. But mujhe toh main bahut sahi lagti hun. Who are these people to tell me I’m not pretty? But for the next 1.5 years I didn’t get work. It’s easy to doubt yourself at such a time, but I knew the journey is more important than the destination.” Radhika said adding, “So I made an effort to enjoy my auditions! Soon, I signed my first film as other projects followed.” Radhika said that she gained 12 kgs for a role to look older and auditioned for a 17-year-old character, both in a month. The audition, for ‘Angrezi Medium’ turned out to be ‘one of my best & I got the part’ “I had only one motto–just have fun,” she said.
“I think the key is to love yourself fiercely because what you see in yourself is what others see in you. If I’d been insecure, people would’ve fed on that fear. So whether it’s as a kid who didn’t care about her unibrow or an adult who thinks her height is cute, I celebrated my imperfections. I know I don’t have to fit someone else’s definition of perfection–I’m imperfectly perfect & I love it,” Radhika concluded. On the work front, Radhika Madan was last in Netflix Anthology ‘Ray’. She will soon be seen in the film ‘Shiddat’ and the web series ‘Feels Like Ishq’.