It was a dream start – a dream role with a dream cast – for Ayesha Kapur, who played a blind, deaf and dumb girl in Sanjay Leela Bhansali Black in 2005, sharing screen space with actor Amitabh Bachchan. But other than that and a role in Sikandar (2009) as a child actor, Kapur has stayed away from the movies to this day.
Talking about his life post Black, the 27-year-old, who grew up in Auroville, says: “The people of Auroville don’t really watch movies. I didn’t grow up watching Bollywood movies, it’s very multicultural. It was not the same as growing up in Delhi or Mumbai. People didn’t care that I was black and famous. I remember that only when I went to Pondicherry, people would recognize me and take autographs… and that would be embarrassing.
She admits her upbringing was different, which is why she never let fame and money get to her head. “In Auroville you don’t brag about fame and money because you don’t want to sound like a sighted person. For me, it was a bit overwhelming to navigate all of this. But I’m grateful that I had the opportunity to make the film, ”she adds.
After his stellar debut, which won him numerous awards, it’s pretty hard to imagine that Kapur wouldn’t have had many more acting opportunities as a child actor. Here, she reveals that her father made the decision on her behalf to stay away from Bollywood.
“My dad is super protective and he didn’t want me to get caught up in this whole Bollywood thing. They weren’t living in Mumbai and they didn’t want me to lead this life. At that age, you’re very impressionable. People. tell you that you are good and that it could have negatively impacted me and affected who I will become, ”she shares.
Kapur quickly adds that fame isn’t a bad thing, but for the kid, it’s another story. In fact, she reveals that between school and university, she spent time in Mumbai to embark on an acting career and that’s when Shekhar Kapur Paani pass. Unfortunately, the film was never shot.
“It was a dream role for me. The film was in both Hindi and English, something I was very comfortable with as English is not my first language…. I had a three-film contract with the production company, then the film was shelved and I broke the contract. My parents then insisted that I had to go to university and I resumed my studies, ”says Kapur, who is now a coach in nutrition and integrative health.
Currently based in Goa, she says living outside Auroville made her realize how difficult it is to maintain a healthy lifestyle on a daily basis.
“It also made me realize that I want to be in this business and embrace health and wellness. I graduated last year from Columbia University in sociology and took a one year course in health and nutrition. I want to share this with people. I live in Goa now and help people achieve their health goals and be healthier, ”says Kapur, who is also a co-founder of an accessories business with her mother.
However, she admits that there is still love left to act. “My main focus is in the area of health and wellness. But I am open to playing. I haven’t signed an agent yet. I had people approaching me but nothing materialized. I would just like to go all the way with the right kind of role, ”she concludes.