A ‘web’ of new experiences

Express News Service

Working on the psycho-thriller, Web, provided Shilpa Manjunath with several new experiences, including being part of stunt sequences. “I had to pull them off in a dress and high heels! The cramped space we were shooting in was restrictive of movement, but the heels really made it tough. Luckily, the stunt director allowed me to remove my footwear and we shot it in a way that wouldn’t affect continuity,” says Shilpa. During the shooting of this portion, she apparently lost her balance and fell backwards. “Thankfully, an assistant caught me in the nick of time. Else I might have been quite badly injured.”

Perhaps on account of the novelty of these action sequences, Shilpa admits to having gotten carried away a little. “I had to jump on the hero, Natty, and attempt to strangle him. I got so much into character that I jumped on his back and held on so tightly that he started actually choking. Only when the director called off the shot did I realise what was happening. I apologised profusely to him and thankfully, he understood I was new to shooting stunts.”

Shilpa also had a scary moment during a sequence involving a dog. “I am not scared of dogs; so, I said yes to a scene in which I had to run, jump, and fall in front of a dog’s snarling face. But when I saw the pitbull—its ferocious growl, its teeth laid bare—I froze. As instructed, it leapt towards me. Though the trainer held onto its leash from behind, I was terrified. My expressions of fear were actually real! I did get over it and become good friends with the dog though.”

Web also gave Shilpa her first commercial dance number which proved more strenuous than she imagined. “In earlier films, I had only done montage songs. Through this film, I discovered how much energy is needed to shoot a dance number. For a song choreographed by Sandy Master, the shoot began at 6 am and lasted for 12 hours. I’m a night person; so, despite the early hours, I was full of energy. But as the day wore on, I began getting exhausted. My eyes turned red, and I had to use eye drops to get rid of them. I endured it with the hope that audiences would love seeing a new side of me in films.”

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