Lahari Shari was working as a journalist for a leading news channel when a ‘happy accident’ landed her a small but important part in the much successful Telugu film ‘Arjun Reddy’. The success of the film paved the way for several more and bigger acting opportunities. In a very short span of time, Lahiri has acted in a vast number of projects across different film industries in the South.
In this interview, she talks about her journey in the entertainment industry so far, plans for the second season of ‘Night Drive With Lahari’, doing Hindi films, rumours of participating in ‘Bigg Boss 5 Telugu’ and more.
Arjun Reddy was your first film as an actor. There is an interesting story behind you got that film. Your friend had gone to audition for the film but the director spotted you and asked you to audition for the part.
Yes, my foray into acting has been a strange but beautiful accident. I never thought of acting as a career option. It’s something that happened by chance and I can only be grateful about it. I recently completed shooting for my 12th film. I have thoroughly enjoyed my journey so far.
Before acting happened, what was your goal in life?
I had studied journalism and I was into news journalism. I had planned on being a journalist all my life. After ‘Arjun Reddy’ released, I started getting multiple acting offers and I became a full-time actor.
Apart from being a successful actor, you have been a very popular anchor too. You have interviewed more than 100 celebrities on your chat show ‘Night Drive with Lahari’.
Yes, the show became a huge success because of its concept. The concept of the show was ‘drive, dine and wine’. We had planned a limited number of episodes for the show and nobody from the team had expected it to become so successful. We will start working on the second season soon.
What do you enjoy doing more, acting or anchoring?
I enjoy both the things equally. Since I have studied journalism, I have always liked interviewing people. Becoming an actor was not a planned move but I fell in love with it as soon as I started pursuing it.
You have several projects lined up for release. There is the Telugu remake of Malayalam film ‘Joseph’, Telugu remake of ‘Andhadhun’. You play a Keralite in a series titled ‘Ala Adhi Parichayam’. Tell us something about these projects.
I play a small character but important role in ‘Maestro’, the Telugu remake of ‘Andhadhun’. I had loved the original film and it was great to be a part of its remake. ‘Ala Adhi Parichayam’ was shot a long time back. The series has shaped up very well and they are looking for the right platform to release it on. I am very excited about ‘Joseph’ as I play the main antagonist in it. This is the first time in my career that I have essayed such a role.
Do you plan to do Hindi films?
Yes, I would like to work across all the industries as long as the work offered to me is good. I believe language should not be a barrier for an actor. If a good offer comes from the Hindi film industry, I will definitely take it up.
There are rumours about you being a part of ‘Bigg Boss 5 Telugu’.
The channel did approach me for the show. I have always been a fan of the show. Whether I am a part of it or not is something you will find out when it comes on air (laughs).