Stirring up a tornado with a glance. Making us go weak in the knees. Battling demons. Yes, Radhika Apte can do it all. And she wants you to know that.
Welcome to Maxim. We’ve been trying to do this for a while. Are you excited?
I’m very excited! We’ve been talking about this for a long time! I really like the way Maxim styles its women, and I love the concept of today’s shoot.
So, what are you working on currently?
I’m trying to take a holiday. Actually, I’m promoting my film Baazaar and I’m also celebrating the success of Andhadhun. After all of this, I’m planning to take a little break before I start shooting my next film.
She's one-of-a-kind, and she's made a career off it! @radhikaofficial makes her Maxim debut on the cover of the November issue! 🔥 Photography: @jatinkampani Styling: @aasthasharma Hair & make-up: @namratasoni Location: @thewestinmumbai #RadhikaApte #RadhikaApteForMaxim #HotRightNow #SexyBack #MaximIndia
You’re fearless when it comes to choosing roles. What kind of thought process goes into selecting a particular script?
I just have to like the script; it has to excite me. Actually, I don’t think I’m fearless when it comes to zeroing down on roles. If you ask me to play a similar kind of role in multiple films, that’ll scare the shit out of me. So, I don’t think it’s fearless at all.
You’ve often been called a non-conformist as an artist. Do you agree?
I’m not a non-conformist. I have certain really important beliefs. For example, I believe that an actor’s job is to try different characters, to challenge oneself constantly and not have an image. You should be able to completely change characters, personalities and films, and yet be recognisable. So, I stick to that. I really believe that you need to keep going back to brushing your skills up and practicing. I also care more about my work rather than all the frills and things that are attached to it.
"I believe that an actor’s job is to try different characters, to challenge oneself constantly and not have an image. You should be able to completely change characters, personalities and films, and yet be recognisable." @radhikaofficial for Maxim #RadhikaApte #RadhikaApteForMaxim #HotRightNow #SexyBack #MaximIndia
When did you know that acting was your true calling?
I knew it since childhood. I always only wanted to be an actor. I don’t even know why (at that time, I mean). I think I have an addictive personality, and the only thing that can keep me grounded is acting or performing. It gives me that high.
You were raised in Pune and then you moved to London, and now you shuffle between Mumbai and London. Which city feels like home the most?
All three are home at the moment. I always feel at home wherever I am. If I’m shooting in another country, I always say, “Okay, I’m gonna go home.” I never say, “I’m going to the hotel room.” I think the only place I struggle to feel at home is probably America. I don’t know why. I need to figure out a way of finding comfort there.
We heard you’ve studied dance.
Yes, I did a diploma in dance studies. Movement analysis was a part of it.
What is movement analysis?
Rudolf Laban has a theory called Choreology. The entire concept essentially revolves around analysing and dissecting different forms of movement and going to the roots of what movement is. It’s genuinely one of the most interesting studies I’ve ever done.
Did it help you in honing your skills as a performer?
Of course it helped. You watch something and you feel “Oh my god, this is so great,” but when you get to the root of what it was, you dissect it. You don’t get overwhelmed by it. Once you understand the science behind it, you also create new things with it. You begin to look at the space around you in a very different way. I remember we were studying this cube around us, and I came to realise there were some corners of my personal space that I was completely unaware of. It’s like you feel, “Oh, I’ve never really stretched my body towards that corner of my cube.”
How do you stay fit, both physically and mentally?
I’ve just realised that I have to work towards achieving all of these. That’s one thing I’ve ignored for the last two-and-a-half years. I’m trying to practise yoga and swimming regularly. I’m really weak at the moment; I did one day of yoga and I had to take a massage! I’m also trying to do pranayam.
Describe your ideal vacation.
I should be able to switch my phone off and not worry about anything that’s going to happen. And, I love beaches and forests.
What’s the most impulsive thing you’ve ever done for a guy?
I’m only impulsive when it comes to love. I’ve paid dearly for that, but I’ve also gotten immense love in return.
What’s the craziest thing a guy has ever done for you?
My husband moved countries for me!
What are the things you wish men knew about women?
Without generalising, I think men don’t know what women go through. In the light of the #MeToo movement, I feel men aren’t understanding the dexterity of the situation. Recently, I was discussing with a friend of mine, “Do you know how many times your ass gets grabbed or someone’s looking down your cleavage and you don’t even remember five minutes later?” We’ve gotten so used to making this a part of our lives, and I don’t think men have a clue about it. There was somebody I was talking to, and this person goes like “But...” And I said, if you’ve been constantly told something because of your race, you’ll feel the pain, right? So, we feel like that with gender.
What can Maxim readers do to make the women in their lives smile, or #MakeHerSmile?
I think what happens in relationships in general is that every superficial thing becomes very important. If you really understand what people’s needs are
and try to be there, people will be happy. God, I don’t know what to do to make anyone smile.
You have worked with a lot of big stars. Who’s been your favourite?
The most inspiring has been Rajinikanth! He is the biggest superstar, and the humility, discipline, equality and respect that he practices is simply commendable.
What kind of roles would you like to play in the coming year?
I’d love to play challenging roles. I don’t want to play smaller roles all the time. Men are getting some really meaty roles and I’d love to play them.
Would you rather have a conversation with an intelligent guy or a funny guy?
It doesn’t matter because the funny guy’s sense of humour may be different from mine, and the intelligent guy’s perspective may be different from mine. I think our wavelengths should match and there has to be a connection.
What makes a man irresistible to you?
I’ve found no man irresistible in my life so far. I can definitely resist, survive and be happy.
What is a complete turn-off?
Well, there’s a particular kind of humour I don’t like you know, those awful sexual and racist jokes?
If not an actor, what would you be?
Maybe study mathematics or do something in wildlife.
Finally, what does a guy need to do to impress you?
A lot. Basically, they need to know that I don’t understand silent messages. If you like me, you need to just come and tell me. I never read into anything, so be upfront.
Photography: Jatin Kampani
Styling: Aastha Sharma
Hair & make-up: Namrata Soni
Location: The Westin Mumbai Garden City