"Though born with a silver spoon, I never took advantage of it" – Yoshika Verma
Yoshika Verma is a Mumbai-based actor, commercial model, and a voice-over artist. Having received training in acting from the Barry John Acting Studio, Mumbai, and the LB Acting Studio, Canada, Yoshika has appeared in over 30 television commercials and five feature films. IAD connects with Yoshika to learn that she’s the daughter of renowned action director & producer, Mr. Pappu Verma, and more in an exclusive tete-a-tete. Snippets from the conversation below.
Tell us more about yourself – your story, struggle, breakthrough, and success.
I was born with a silver spoon, thanks to my father’s legacy, but never took advantage of it. I moved out of my father’s fancy bungalow at an early age to find my path in the cinema industry. I did five films [Peddlers, Darr @ the Mall, Yeh Hai Bakrapur, Yahaan Sabki Lagi Hai, Vansh] and 30 odd advertisements – all on my merit. The popular ones being for BSNL 3G, LG, Chevrolet Enjoy, DTH, Santoor, Cafe Coffee Day, Nokia Lumina 520, Honda Activa, Mi Band – HRX Edition, Wedding Wishlist, ICICI Bank, Pureit Water Purifier, and BPCL’s MAK Lubricants. I am still waiting for a breakthrough, though.
I did many odd jobs to pay my bills, and in the process, discovered other talents in me. I worked behind the scenes as a Director’s Assistant for movies, wrote stories for short films, and even worked as a voice-over artist despite having a noticeable stammer. Then, during a commercial shoot, director Hemant Bhandari from Chrome Pictures saw that I have a knack for coaching children on acting jobs, which is a specialized task. I’ve been training children since then.
I’m currently working on a book, a collection of short stories in Hindi.
Why did you choose this industry to build your career? What excited you the most?
I’m focused on making my name in the industry. I want people to know me for my work. It is painstakingly hard when you are living every day on the edge. And, when you are continually getting rejected [in auditions]. It bruises my ego, but, at the same time, challenges me to do more and better each time. The journey so far has not been comfortable but am enjoying the process. It is romantic! I’m not giving up.
Please tell us about your family and anything specific you’d like to share?
I come from a very humble family of extraordinary people. All my family members [Tinnu Verma, Bhiku Verma] have made a name in the movie industry. My grandfather, Sri Badriprasad Jaidev Verma, was a well-known stunt man during the 1960s.
My father is a brilliant technician, and he is my biggest inspiration; I know, in this life, I can’t be half as legendary as him. He owns 40 horses. He has been supplying them to the movies and training actors in horse riding for over four decades. I can’t thank him enough for awakening a part of my soul by introducing me to the horse-and-human connection.
Can you talk about any interesting anecdotes of your life with our readers?
One of the most exciting things that happened in my life was during the BSNL 3G ad shoot, where I was working as an assistant director. Our team had auditioned about 300 girls for the commercial, and no one fitted right. My director eventually asked me to give it a try. I not only auditioned but ended up bagging the role! It was such a massive success that when director Pradeep Sarkar met me at his office, told me how much he and his wife loved the ad! He enquired whether that was my voice in the commercial and was excited to know that it was! A very proud moment for me as an actor. [she grins]
IAD wishes Yoshika Verma the very best in all her future endeavors. You can follow her on Instagram @yoshikavermaofficial.
Interview by Wajendhar R Kulkarni.