Richa, played a comic role as Bholi Punjaban in Fukrey, but has mostly done serious roles such as the foul-mouthed Nagma in Gangs of Wasseypur, the strong-willed Rasila in Goliyon Ki Rasleela Ram-Leela or the depressed wife Sukhpreet in Sarabjit. The actor spoke to Hindustan Times ahead of her stand-up debut, sharing a glimpse of her humorous side. Excerpts:
What made you enter the world of stand-up comedy?
I like to experiment and when this opportunity came along, I thought ‘let’s see how it goes down’. They said there’s a show where a celebrity will have to be mentored and it turned out to be very challenging and fun experience.
Have you tried something similar while growing up?
I used to be a prankster when I was young. I used to make fun of friends, playing pranks and pulling each other’s leg...basically, be a buffoon. But I haven’t done stand-up comedy.
How funny are you are on a scale of 1 to 10?
That’s for the audience to decide.
Do you agree with the use of cuss words by stand-up comedians? Your opinion about the same.
During the last few years, I have seen a lot of people expressing themselves through comedy. I am more offended by some of the things that the politicians say. Someone just said that Pakistan and China are releasing toxic fumes leading to pollution in India. Politicians are giving such competition to stand-up comics. The stand-up comedians are coughing in anger and frustration ‘ki humari naukri mat lejaao yar’. Someone just said there is gold in cow dung. (laughs)
Will you also be seen using cuss words in your stand-up comedy?
You mean as opposed to my films where I use cuss words? When you do comedy, you do all kinds of things -- you make jokes, you make fun of yourself, you make fun of others. Sometimes you use cuss words, sometimes you don’t. It doesn’t matter.
People also land in trouble for making fun of others.
People get into more trouble by breathing the air in Delhi.
What is your favourite character so far?
As a film, I loved doing Masaan. I am really looking forward to be seen in one of my favourite characters - the one I have played in Anubhav Sinha’s film, Abhi Toh Party Shuru Hui Hai. I got a fantastic character to play, called Softy. I am very excited for the people to see the film.
One of the most difficult characters you have played in films?
All my roles are very different from who I am. I am not like Bholi Punjaban (Fukrey) or Nagma (Gangs of Wasseypur). I am not as quiet as in Masaan. I haven’t really done normal parts. The last film Article 375 looked very difficult to me. It is about standing up for something in a very difficult situation.