The gorgeous, hard-working freelance model and actress Paramita RL Rana, known as Pam, had the dream of working in the entertainment sector since she was a child. Taking inspiration from her mother, Rhea Rana, she participated in every plays while studying at Shuvatara School in Kathmandu.
At the Kathmandu Fashion Parade in 2011, she earned her first paycheck of Rs 6,000. After that humble beginning, the bubbly model turned actress has some bitter sweet memories to share about her struggles in the yet-to-be professional modeling sector.
As there are more acting offers in her way now, the twenty-two year old actress desires for scripts that will challenge her as an actor.
In a tête-à-tête with Republica’s Arun Budhathoki, Paramita, talks about her debut movie Chapali Height 2, her passion for movies and modeling, and the love she has for hard work.
Can you tell us something about yourself and your modelling journey?
I finished 10+2 from St. Mary’s, and my Bachelors of Arts degree from Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU). While at school I used to act in plays such as ‘Muna Madan’, and Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’. My drama teacher had told me that I am a natural at acting and should continue acting. That statement really pushed me forward.
I started my modelling career when I was in grade 11 and that was five years ago. I represented Nepal in Korea for Face of Asia in June. I have won the 2014 Face of Classic Diamond and 2015 Face of Nepal competitions as the first runner-up.
I started my international modelling career on a Sri Lankan TV advert for Munchee Lemon Puff biscuits! I had the role of an alien where I had to flee back to space with a carton of biscuits from an astronauts’ house (laughs).
How would you describe the modelling scenario of Nepal?
I would say modelling industry is still growing in Nepal as models have contributed a lot in the past five years. But problems are rife and it would take a decade for the industry to become more professional. The only way to improve the modelling sector is to raise wages, as the pay right now is minimal and not everyone can make a career in it. Even the models who do feature photo-shoots for magazines aren’t paid at all.
How did you land up a role in ‘Chapali Height 2’?
The producer of my debut movie, Arjun Kumar, phoned me one day, saying he saw my portfolio on Instagram and Facebook. He then invited me for a meeting at the office of Popcorn Movies to talk about the script and my contract. I was so thrilled that I told my mother and loved ones about the movie offer. I read the script for two to three hours and after knowing everything I called home and told them that I’d love to do the movie. My family were supportive and that’s how I signed the contract. The movie is set to release on August 18, whereas the trailer and the song, ‘Galti Garau Na’, are available on YouTube.
What’s your role like in the movie?
The character in the movie is a workaholic who meets the hero and falls in love with him. She then puts him before anything. What I can relate with the character is that she is disciplined, passionate, and hardworking.
Can you briefly talk about your experience working with Ayushman Joshi?
I am very comfortable with him and in the movie as he has given an amazing performance. He really challenged me to act better.
Do you have any best moment and worst moment during the movie’s shoot?
The memorable moment is when we had to shoot for the song ‘Galti Garau Na’. I went sleepless for two straight nights for the shoot. And, the most difficult scene of the movie for me would be where I am beaten up by the hero. In that scene I had to synchronize the action scenes with Aayushman to make sure that it looked real. It took six takes for it to complete.
Have you played any roles in Nepali movies previously?
I had a guest appearance in ‘Sadanga’ and ‘Kollywood’. I have one music video, ‘Timi Nai’, by Rodit Bhandari. It was played a lot in India on MTV in 2014.
Are you going to play more movies?
I have made-up my mind that I’d like to play more movies in the future. There are few offers for lead roles already but I’ve been thinking about it. I don’t want people to think of me as a glamorous actor only. I would like to be known in coming days as someone who inspires others to dream.
How are you making yourself busy at the moment?
I usually pray after waking up as I was raised in a religious and cultural family. And then I meet my grandma and bow to her. I exercise and make cover songs too. Other times I stand before the mirror and try to portray the character I’m working on.
One thing about me is that I am a selective introvert but not an anti-social. I used to party a lot when I was a teenager but now I can’t even last more than five minutes (laughs) in parties.
What do you think about representation of women in Nepali films?
I have found a lot of energetic and passionate women playing Nepali movies these days. They are well-educated and come from a variety of cultural background. Also, I don’t think actresses are being subject to secondary roles or are only restricted to portraying objects of sexual desire.
What are your thoughts on actors not getting the right pay?
I have been paid equally compared to my male actors so I don’t think there’s any discrimination in that regard. But what I would say is one should work really hard so that people wouldn’t complain at all. And if there’s discrimination based on gender, it should end.
How do you use social media as a public figure?
I think as a public figure we are responsible to the public so we should be careful about what we post. Moreover, it is important to become active on social media since we need to connect with our fans. I would say that those who want to enter the movie industry should be mentally prepared to confront hate comments. I usually ignore it as I cannot fight with everyone (laughs).