Love Games isn't Tara Alisha Berry's first film. This realization struck me when I got chatting with her about the Vikram Bhatt directed film. To her credit, she has seen a couple of Hindi releases before - Mastram and The Perfect Girl. Former still fetched some attention amongst critics, latter wasn't even released properly. In between, she did Anurag Basu's Chokher Bali on television. However, it is her 'swinger's tale', Love Games, which is fetching her all the attention. The promos have already made an impact, and with an unabashed announcement around this Bhatt affair going beyond bold, one waits to see what's in offer.
Guess a big break like Love Games was long awaited.
Yeah, I have been working since 2014 but Love Games is indeed the big deal. This is my first film with producers as big as Vishesh Films and T-Series, so all of that does matter.
So when the idea came to you from Vikram, were you totally zapped?
As a matter of fact, my first response to Vikram sir was that I know this world (about swinging couples and threesomes); that yes, this world exists. I have lived in Mumbai and Bangalore, so I have been privy to such kind of things. Socially, I know that these things go on with certain people. Of course, these are not the things that have been explored on the celluloid yet. No one is open to admitting that they are into swinging. In parties they don't talk about this. I am excited that this is a first for a Hindi film.
Now you want the rest of the world to know about this, right?
See, there are open relationships; it is just that no one admits to that. The entire thing between such couples is that 'you are with me and you can sleep with anyone you want'. We are living in a hypocritical society. Love Games is touching upon relevant topics. I know that there are many girls out there in an abusive relationship, both mentally and physically. They can leave anytime but somehow they don't. I am playing this independent young woman who is a doctor. She could leave her abusive marriage whenever she wants, but she doesn't. In the film, I am approached to play a sex object in a couple's life.
While a lot is being said about the bold content of the film, both thematically and visually, is there high drama on the cards with the film?
I can't reveal much but I can say that our film's poster reveals it all. Gaurav says 'Sex Is My Painkiller', Patralekha says 'I Am A Sex Addict' whereas I say 'I Am A Sex Object'. These are three people who are pretty wounded, they are all battered. They have different relationships with intimacy and Love Games is about how all of this translates into a definitive story. The film is about love in the times of lust. I am so excited to see the audience response once the whole story is revealed. The film is way beyond what the trailer and songs have to say; audiences are going to be pleasantly surprised.
Now that the promos are on, what are the kind of reactions you are getting?
From within the industry, people are asking me if I am not afraid of being typecast. They are wondering more than me if I would get relegated to A rated films. I am sure though that when people will watch the film, they would realize how much I have to offer. Had I not done Mastram, I would have regretted. Same is the case with Love Games. My friends who are not from film industry have found my characterization in the film completely wow. They believe I am doing some great work in there. They have been very supportive and are eagerly waiting to see the film.
Since Vikram has a knack for shocking audience with something that has never been seen before, is that going to be the case again in Love Games?
You know, this entire thing of 'bold' content is so beyond me; I am against this word. In Bollywood, there are so many films made where you get to see love making, kisses and skin show. We have made a film which is A rated, we are not hiding anything. I don't see any boldness element per se. The only difference is that we just want this film for a slightly mature audience. Children won't get to know about this film. You can't expect a 5 year old to watch Love Games. Even in a romcom film there is so much kissing, so why call Love Games bold? It is time to see on-screen characters who are swingers and fu&k buddies.