Nivetha Pethuraj is best known for her performances in Tamil and Telugu films like Oru Naal Koothu (2016), Tik Tik Tik (2018), Ala Vaikunthapurramuloo (2020), and Pon Manickavel (2021).
The actress says she has a spiritual connection with director Bejoy Nambiar’s web series Kaala which marks her debut in the Hindi film industry.
“I say this because Kaala happened exactly when I got into praying to Kala Bhairavar. Actually, he came into my life. He appeared in my visions after which I started visiting temples. Varanasi is next on my list,” Nivetha Pethuraj told South First.
How did she land the role?
The actress shared how she chose to make her debut in the Hindi film industry with Kaala, the plot of which revolves around Reverse Hawala.
“I had just been to Kalahasti and for some reason, I landed in Mumbai for an ad shoot. The shoot was scheduled to happen the next day when director Bejoy called me,” she recalled.
“He asked me if I could visit Mumbai since the shoot of his web series would begin in two days. He was pleasantly surprised when I replied that I was already in Mumbai. He then narrated a one-liner before sending me a bound script of the series,” Nivetha said, with a hint of excitement in her eyes.
“The script was lying in front of me and I was wondering whether I was going to do it or not. I was also thinking about why these things were happening so swiftly. When I opened the first page, it read: ‘Kaala’, and I instantly decided that I would do the series.”
Interestingly, though Bejoy Nambiar approached Nivetha Pethuraj for two of his earlier projects — Solo (2017) and Taish (2020), she chose to make her debut with Kaala.
Working with Bejoy Nambiar
Asked about her experience of working with the director Bejoy Nambiar, Nivetha Pethuraj said he gives actors room for improvisation.
“You begin to expect the unexpected. For instance, I would be practising my lines when he would suddenly ask me to do the exact same thing. ‘That is what I want’.”
She hastened to add, “Bejoy observes a lot. He knows your strength more than you know it. I haven’t worked with the top heroes yet, but he has been following my work from my first film. He approached me for Solo and Taish as well. His characters are interesting and he keeps an eye out for talents that might suit his characters.”
Reverse Hawala became the talk of the town, and you don’t want to miss it!
Watch #HotstarSpecials #Kaala streaming now in Hindi, Marathi, Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, Bengali and Kannada only on @DisneyPlusHS#KaalaOnHotstar
#BhushanKumar #KrishanKumar @TSeries @nambiarbejoy… pic.twitter.com/qq18vNbpxn
— Nivetha Pethuraj (@Nivetha_Tweets) September 17, 2023
On her role Sithara
Nivetha Pethuraj plays the female lead, Sitara, opposite Avinash Tiwary in Kaala.
“Sitara is an intelligent and resourceful IB officer from Kolkata. She has a complex and intense romantic connection with Avinash’s character Ritwik. Yet, trust issues stemming from her secretive past keep challenging their relationship,” the actress elucidated.
Nivetha says she did not have any particular problems with reproducing the body language of an IB officer, but action sequences were tough.
“I did not have a problem reproducing the body language because I have played a cop in two of my earlier films. However, during one action sequence, I suffered a painful injury,” she recollected.
“Avinash, the male lead, had to punch me in one scene. He punched me for real in the face. Well, I had a narrow escape as the doctor said a little more force could have resulted in my nose getting broken,” Nivetha laughed.
Nevertheless, the actress says she immensely enjoyed shooting for the web series.
Next in line
So, what’s next for her? Well, Nivetha Pethuraj has a Telugu web series titled Paruvu in the pipeline.
When pointed out that her fans in Tamil are missing her, she says with a sheepish grin: “I like both Tamil and Telugu. But the Telugu film industry has been very welcoming.”
She hastened to add, “Also, I am now picking projects on a mixed basis. Some projects are chosen for their remuneration and some others for the satisfaction they bring to you as an artist.”