Nabha Natesh interview: My accident changed everything; but I’m ready for comeback with Swayambhu - Hindustan Times

Nabha Natesh interview: My accident changed everything; but I’m ready for comeback with Swayambhu

ByNeeshita Nyayapati
Apr 16, 2024 06:27 AM IST

In an exclusive conversation with Hindustan Times, Nabha Natesh gets unfiltered about her upcoming films, her accident in 2022, relationship with fame and more.

Nabha Natesh was at the top of her game pre-pandemic. She had delivered a massive hit as the feisty Chandini in iSmart Shankar; the world was her oyster. People loved her. Endorsements and film offers poured in. But then, the pandemic happened. Cooped up at home like everyone else, Nabha initially enjoyed the solitude. Then she got worried. “It felt like things were getting out of my control,” she recollects, in a chat with Hindustan Times. (Also Read: Nabha Natesh makes a comeback with Nikhil Siddhartha’s Swayambhu)

Nabha Natesh is making her comeback after her accident with two films.(Instagram)
Nabha Natesh is making her comeback after her accident with two films.(Instagram)

But things truly did get out of her control in 2022 when she met with a major car accident and it has since taken her long to recover. Even as her colleagues were getting back on sets, she was trying to gain back her strength, fixing fractures and undergoing multiple surgeries. “I broke my shoulder and it needed all my attention and time,” she says. With her last release being the 2021 OTT film Maestro, fans wondered when Nabha would make a comeback. Well…she’s ready now!

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‘My wishlist now is endless, had a lot of time’

Nabha says that she was always on the ‘quest for good roles’ and this forced break has only strengthened her resolve. “I have always waited patiently for good roles to come my way, to work with directors who believe in me. There was no planning to it,” she explains, adding, “And now, I just think my best is yet to come because I’m not done yet. My wishlist of people I want to work with, and roles I want to do is now endless because I’ve had a lot of time to think.”

Nabha Natesh on how she doesn't mind the pitfalls of fame.
Nabha Natesh on how she doesn't mind the pitfalls of fame.

And one of the things she thought about at this time, was just how much she didn’t mind the pitfalls that came with fame - such as loss of privacy. A rare thing for a celeb to say, I comment. “This (performing) is all I’ve done all my life, it’s what I love. I don’t feel like I lost anything. I realised it’s the best feeling in the world to have the love of the audience. I was a theatre artist before I came into films, so it’s a whole different ball game when people suddenly recognise you no matter where you go. But it felt like a chunk of me was missing when I couldn’t work. So, I won’t complain,” she says.

‘You break bones and realise you’re not immortal’

Nabha’s fans were worried when she announced the reason for her being MIA in the beginning of 2023 - that she had met with an accident and had to undergo surgery. But the actor remained spry as ever on social media after that, sharing pictures of her travel escapades, photo shoots and even her love for making art. 

“I think there’s a major change in the way I look at life now, like everybody else I was always on the run to be somebody,” she says, adding, “No one forced me…it was just my personality, I was happy to do it. But since the accident, I have a lot more respect for my body and mind. My priorities are still the same, but there’s a shift in the way I approach things.”

Nabha Natesh on realising her mortality after the accident.
Nabha Natesh on realising her mortality after the accident.

Ask her to elaborate and she says, “I rest when I need to, pause when I want to without feeling guilty about it. I still have the same drive to do good work, but it’s not led by blind ambition like it once was. When you break your bones, you realise you’re not immortal…everything is breakable. Might as well be the best at what you do while being respectful to your needs.”

But that's something everyone says, she realises, especially in the age of self-care. “But no one understands how important it is to follow through with it until you go through something like I did,” she adds.

‘I worked my way up once, I can do it again’

What Nabha would like more than anything, is to get back to her roots someday. She was only 19 when she debuted in the 2015 Kannada film Vajrakaya. “Even now I see girls in colleges dancing to my songs in the film. I’m waiting for the day I get to do something substantial in the language,” she says. But for now, she has two films in Telugu lined up for her big comeback - Swayambu, a period action film with Nikhil Siddhartha and a yet-to-be-announced comedy thriller.

Nabha Natesh's look from Swayambhu.
Nabha Natesh's look from Swayambhu.

“I made my way up in this film industry by myself through auditions. No one handed me anything. I can achieve success, but what happens after that isn’t in my control. I did this once, I’m sure I can do it again. The audience liked me once, I hope they like the work I’m doing now,” she says. Her look from Swayambhu sees her dressed in a period look, something she has never done before. “I’ve never done a role that required a classical touch to date. My character has a beautiful arch throughout the film, something that interested me,” she adds.

Nabha Natesh on working her way up to success again.
Nabha Natesh on working her way up to success again.

Ask her about the other, mysterious project she's working on and she goes mum. Prod and she can’t help herself from revealing, “I workshopped for a month to get into the skin of the character, it felt like going back to my roots in theatre. I’m so excited about it…making people laugh is one of the hardest things ever. Fortunately, the roles I’ve played through the years have always had an underlying humour to them, so that helped me. Now, I’m just waiting for the filmmakers to announce it.”

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