So I just want to ask right off the bat, what drew you to “India Sweets and Spices”?
SA: Um, so many things. I feel like it would take so long to touch on every aspect of it that drew me to it. But I mean, first and foremost, [it] definitely just it hit home. And that was the biggest thing. Yeah.
Your character, Alia, has a lot on her plate. In the beginning, we learn that she’s at UCLA, and on the Dean’s List, and she’s also the oldest child in her family. What was it like for you to kind of go into a character like that, especially going to a college-age character and kind of living that [life]?
SA: Yeah, I’m the oldest in my family as well. So I can relate. You know, I didn’t go to college or anything like that, but I don’t know, I just, I feel like I understand that perspective. So much. Just, I’m 26 just turned 26. So I don’t know, it feels like this year, I’m an adult. Now all of a sudden, like, of course, before I was but now I’m passing the pass on like, I’m, I’m an adult. And now I’m applying all the things that I feel like I’ve learned that I needed throughout my life. I’m just really, you know, making sure that I get those things and I can relate to all of you in that way. Like I think that growing up, she probably just there was so much that happened that she was just unaware of you know, and then when she left she had that time to figure out who she was and then she comes back and in that she just made more aware of the things around her
Yeah, and I mean like I said a lot of it’s you know, family-focused and there’s a lot of chemistry between you and you know, your classmates and co-stars who would you say? I mean, do you think I mean I’m sure you would agree who would you say you’re at the best you know the most chemistry with out of all your co-stars?
SA: Oh, that’s a hard question to ask because our answer because sorry. Ask how dare you ask that? No, it’s a hard question to answer because everyone I felt like I had a different connection to Adil and Manisha; I connect to more like parents and there was the sense I looked up to them you know, they were they’ve done it longer than me and they know more and so I had this like more I learned I just learned from them so much. And then with Rish and Ved the guys who play a Varun and, and Rahul There we go. Wow. So many names. There were like brothers to me. We got so close. You know, we were living in Atlanta and the same hotel and they’re just such cool dudes. I really enjoyed working with everyone but Anita [Kalathara], the girl who plays Neha, I’ve known her from previous jobs. She lives in LA you know, we were tight. It was cool.
Yeah, that’s really cool. And are there any like memories on or off-set that come to mind?
SA: We would do little pranks all the time. I did this one prank where I would just pretend like I needed water and then just throw it at people. And this sounds bad because we’re filming and so you can’t really throw water on people. But we were so close. Even on days that they wouldn’t be filming, they would come and watch [the shoot] and stuff. Plus, there wasn’t really much to do much else to do. So I would really mess with them on those days in particular because they knew they couldn’t get me [back]. Yeah, there was a lot of camaraderie and definitely was more so than any set I think I’ve ever worked.
Yeah. And just with, I mean, what was the atmosphere like this? I think there are three different party scenes in the film and I’m sure those were fun to film, even though there are some dramatic moments that happen.
SA: Yeah, they were fun to film. Um, they’re always so hectic. Any I mean, it wasn’t like, the real-life thing at all, you know, it was very structured. And there’s just a lot of people in one room. So it does get a little bit, you know, just hectic. You’re confused, you know, and you and like, you want the story, the message come across, but there’s just so many people around, and everyone’s so curious, you know? Because they’re excited at the end of the day, like, just like I am, you know, I was excited when I saw this movie. And for the first time, and so many Indian people all at once, you know, um, and I think they probably were just feeling the same way. I was like, and it was, it kept the energy up, that’s for sure.
If you had to sell somebody on this movie, you know, casual moviegoer, I know, it’s going to be in theaters next week, how would you sell “India Sweets and Spices” to somebody?
SA: I would sell it like if you want a new perspective, told in a way, in a way that, you know, you’re meant to relate to I, it, like you want to open your mind. I think that when you exercise those kinds of things, it is just beneficial in the long run, you know, you [usually] watch something that’s like, so similar to you. It’s almost like stops being similar to you because you’re comparing it so closely. But when you see something from like, an outside perspective, especially if it’s new, you can find these different things that you relate to, and maybe you see it differently because it’s a new perspective.
You have “Uncharted” coming out next spring, and I just want to ask what the jump was like from “India Sweets and Spices,” a small, intimate film, to a big franchise movie?
SA: Oh, there were so many different things. I mean, even just the content of the movie. You know, Alia [from “India Sweets and Spices”] is a character that I relate to entirely; I am a rebel, she’s a rebel, and we’re outspoken [so] I didn’t do much searching there. But Chloe in “Uncharted,” [she’s] half-Australian, half-Indian. She’s a badass and a fighter and just so different. They’re polar opposites as far as characters. And I had to do a lot more legwork. But I [was drawn] to Chloe because I had to learn an accent [Australian], which I never thought that I would [have to do] in my life, and it was fun. But the length [of production was different]; and we’d shoot an eighth of a page a day on “Uncharted” — a six-month-long shoot — and I think we had six weeks to film “Indian Sweets and Spices.”
Thank you to Ginsberg Libby for the opportunity to speak with Sophia.
“India Sweets and Spices” will release in theaters on November 19.