Disha Patani’s journey from Bareilly to B-Town is well-documented, as his her tryst with films. Presently, this nimble yet graceful actor is the talk of the town for her upcoming big-ticket projects. In the scenic setting of Doha, HELLO! reconnects with the sensuous star on her confidence, philosophies for life and living in contentment.
What makes Disha Patani so exceptional? To understand her phenomenon and discover wherein lies her USP, one needs to watch her on set or perform live — for she’s dynamic and oozes confidence in her work space, but is a reticent woman of few words off camera, shying away from revealing much about herself.
Disha’s true tomboyish demeanour was evident during her shoot with HELLO! in the Qatari capital of Doha. But place her before arc lights, and she transforms. She’s poised and flirts effortlessly with the camera, in sync with the photographer who draws the best out of the actor, in form, façade and photos.
Providing the perfect backdrop for the first leg of our shoot is KAI’s Songbird, a Chinese restaurant at Corinthia Yacht Club, with luxurious, airy interiors overlooking the azure marina of Porto Arabia.
“What a beautiful location,” Disha exclaims immediately on arrival, quickly slipping into a shimmery golden cold-shoulder dress that accentuates her slender frame and sets the tone for our elaborate cover shoot.
“This is my third time working with Team HELLO!,” she smiles, cheerful in a gown in one of her favourite colours. “It’s always been an extremely warm and fun experience, and I look forward to more such shoots!”
Geared Up For Her Next
As she preens and poses for the camera, we engage in a tête-à-tête on the many interesting projects on her plate, starting with Yodhathat releases this September. Unsurprisingly, Disha is excited about the film’s prospects at the box office, given that it’s an action franchise co-produced by Dharma Productions and Amazon Prime Video.
“I’m super excited for the audience to watch Yodha. I hope they enjoy it as much as I enjoyed filming the movie,” she enthuses.
One to get along well with most of her co-stars, Disha had a gala time on the sets of Yodha. And when the co-actor happens to be the affable Sidharth Malhotra, the gushing is anticipated.
“Working with Sid was good fun. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves on set. He’s a fantastic co-star, and I couldn’t have asked for better company while filming for this movie.”
Art In Motion
Meanwhile, our photo shoot moves to the picturesque setting of the Museum of Islamic Art, on the southern end of Doha Bay. This time, Disha emerges in a candy pink gown by a homegrown designer, Wadha, who belongs to the Royal Family of Qatar.
Disha is easy on the eye, twirling around in her ensemble with the ease of someone who’s done this countless times. The camera loves her, and she understands the photographer’s requirements amid the merry banter between them…
Besides presenting the best views of the Doha skyline, the museum overlooks the azure waters of the Arabian Sea. Lending to the magical atmosphere is Disha, strutting about in stilettos complementing her flowing gown, attracting attention from passersby.
However, unbeknownst to them is the kind of effort she puts in to look the way she does. Her athletic yet feminine frame is a result of hours of diligent workouts back in Mumbai. In fact, even during our short stay in Doha, she made it a point to hit the gym at the luxurious Waldorf Astoria. Dedicated, we must say...
Heading Back South
While her Instagram feed may be taken up by her martial arts moves, the other kind of moves Disha is known for is on stage. Graceful and energetic, she’s starred in many a popular dance number, including with Salman Khan in ‘Slow Motion’ and ‘Seeti Maar.’ Next, we’ll catch her shaking a leg with southern superstar Prabhas in Project K.
“I’m so grateful for the opportunity to work on a project of the scale of Project K. The entire process was enjoyable, and I can’t wait for the movie to hit the screens for everyone to watch and love as much as I do.”
It’s raining superstars in her repertoire of upcoming films, as Disha has also added a Tamil movie opposite Surya to her filmography. While she made her debut in the entertinament industry with the Telugu film Loafer, she found it quite the test to work on a movie in Tamil, a language unfamiliar to her.
“It wasn’t easy to shoot in a language unknown to one, but I loved the challenge. I was blessed to have all the support and patience from my director, Siva sir, who helped me extensively in understanding the language better and grab its nuances. This, in turn, encouraged me to mould myself into the character.”
During our last conversation with Disha, she had revealed how selective she is about her choices in films. The pattern clearly continues. But when we wonder where this confidence comes from, especially at a time when most Bollywood actors are looking to add more films to their oeuvre, she clears the confusion…
“I don’t think it’s about confidence. It’s all about doing what you love and what you can relate to. Striking that relatability with the audience is a crucial factor, apart from just pure love for your work.”
It’s time for a quick change into a slinky black sequined gown that plays peek-a-boo with her legs. Looking at her, some may claim she’s blessed with a naturally svelte physique, oblivious to the assiduous discipline it requires in reality.
A mindful eater, Disha follows a healthy diet that’s unshakable, as proven the evening prior to our shoot. While the rest of the crew dug into the delicious fare at Sushisamba, Disha — dressed in comfortable athleisure this time, with a shawl wrapped around her — appeared to peck at her food. It’s maintaining this fit physique that plays a vital role in keeping her mind calm and alert, she discloses.
The Way Forward
As she patiently poses for the camera before the iconic staircase at the Museum of Islamic Art, waiting for the photographer to catch just the right light, she reflects on how 2023 has shaped up for her, so far.
“It’s been pretty amazing. This year, I’m putting all my focus into self-reflection and trying to understand myself — what I love, what I desire, and what makes me happy. I’d like 2023 to end with me knowing myself a little better.”
Not someone who believes in extensively planning and chalking out the future to a tee, this actor prefers to go with the flow and believes in expressing her gratitude to the universe.
“I’m most grateful for the people around me, the people who love me and have supported me through my journey. I’m especially grateful to be surrounded by people with whom I can connect.”
It’s these simple philosophies that make life easier for Disha in more ways than one. And waking up with a positive attitude and maintaining that Zen, no matter how the day unfolds, has also made her a content soul. Not everyone is desperately ambitious in today’s world of cutthroat competition, which is perfectly fine when it’s the path they choose to pursue. And Disha did, much to her peace and pleasure!
Realisation: Ruchika Mehta; Interview: Nayare Ali; Photos: Sasha Jairam; Senior Fashion Editor: Amber Tikari; Junior Stylist: Anushree Sardesai; Makeup: Severine Perina; Hair: Humera Shaikh; Jewellery Partner: Birdhichand Ghanshyamdas; Destination Partner: Visit Qatar; Airline Partner: Qatar Airways; Hospitality Partner: Waldorf Astoria Lusail Doha; Line Production: Fab Entertainment Qatar; Location Courtesy: Corinthia Yacht Club Qatar, Kai’s Songbird, Museum Of Islamic Art & Waldorf Astoria Lusail Doha
This has been adapted for the web from a story originally published in the July 2023 issue of HELLO! India. Get our copy of the latest issue right here!