She has the wings to fly but chooses to stand her ground. A multifaceted artiste with twinkling eyes and fluid movements, her rhythm forever lives on.
Name: Sanjeeda Shaikh
Date of birth: 20 December
Place of birth: Kuwait
Zodiac Sign: Sagittarius
Dance has been my passion since childhood.
2000s were well liked times not only for us but even for television, who gave us onscreen actor Sanjeeda Shaikh. This dancing queen stole our hearts with her graceful moves and intuitive acting style, whenever she appeared on the platform. A versatile performer, she has experimented with various mediums, from films, music videos to web series. Now, this diva has also ventured into a new industry where she has rightfully made her place on the silverscreen. We speak to her as she dazzles in front of the camera.
Your love for dance has not been hidden from us and you have not failed to impress the audiences with your moves. How was your journey in Nach Baliye 3 and Zara Nachke Dikha?
Dance has been my passion since childhood. It is my favourite language to communicate with the audience and I love expressing myself through the lens. Reality shows for me have been a huge turning point. Earlier all my fans knew me by the name of the character I played on screen. After appearing on shows like Nach Baliye and Zara Nachke Dikha, people recognised the real Sanjeeda which was very crucial for me.
Fame is certainly a game changer and coming from a non- filmy background, what have you learned about yourself since you became a celebrity?
Fame is something that cannot be inherited, it requires a great deal of patience and hard work. I believe that being a celebrity comes with its own perks but with fame comes responsibility. Being humble and grounded are the strongest assets you have to acquire if you are in this field. I have gradually imbibed these qualities in me. Having no cinematic background, especially in an industry which runs on nepotism, is an achievement in its own. I am truly blessed that I get to work in this field and receive love and respect from my fans.
Your web series Gehraiyaan was a psychological horror series. What made you choose that particular genre?
Horror, as a genre appeals to me and I find it very intriguing. I can endlessly binge watch scary movies and TV shows. So that was the prime reason why I chose to do this series and I loved shooting for it.
Fame is something that cannot be inherited, it requires a great deal of patience and hard work.
It is said, “The best acting is instinctive. It’s neither intellectual, nor mechanical, but instinctive.” From soap operas to films, how has your transition been?
Every actor has a different pattern of performing. I am very spontaneous when it comes to acting, as I naturally want to connect with the audience at large. Today, in a world full of competition, every performer I come across is brimming with talent and I get to learn so much from each individual. The transition from television to films hasn’t been very drastic because at the end of the day you have to give your 100 per cent and that’s my mantra. Be it through a 70mm film, a soap opera or on a digital platform.
You’ve recently made your debut in Punjabi Cinema for which you won for best debutante. How was your experience?
I did my first Punjabi film Ashke with Amrinder Gill and the whole experience of Punjab has been beautiful. The affection and warmth that Punjabis shower you with is overwhelming. The place and its natives have left an indelible imprint on my life. The movie fortunately did very well for me. Winning the award did boost my confidence and encouraged me to thrive for more. I’m looking forward to taking up some great projects in Punjab.
One unrevealed fact about you that no one knows?
I don’t work out and am a big foodie. I just make sure that whatever I eat is right for my body. Also, the fact that I am not a dessert person works perfectly with my diet.
One secret about women, which men should know?
Women may seem very confusing but the road to their heart is straight and uncomplicated. Women just want to feel special. No matter whichever phase of life she belongs to, just make her feel loved. That’s what I want my man to do. And I’m sure all the girls would agree to this.
And one secret about men, that all women should know?
I am a person who is driven by equality. I believe that men deserve the same love and affection that they express towards their lady love. Be considerate, spend quality time to understand him and you will truly achieve the key to his heart.
What would your outfit for a romantic date be?
I am quite experimental with my looks and keep switching my styles. For a romantic date my first choice used to be an evening gown but recently I am trying to incorporate casual outfits in my wardrobe. So I would wear a comfy tee and slide on a pair of jeans. I admire cool and quirky printed shirts which work as an alternative. Also dates are more about understanding your man. So I focus more on the time I spend with him.
I believe that men deserve the same love and affection that they express towards their lady love.
The sultriest pickup line ever used on you?
I have never experienced a sultry pickup line but received some adorable and funny pickup lines. One of them was “I think you have something in your eyes” and the person responded, “oh never mind it’s just the sparkle after seeing you.”
What does your man do to woo you?
My man doesn’t have to push himself to impress me. I am not a diamond fan, nor an admirer of fancy and expensive things. I seek that emotional touch and effort my man puts in, something no matter how simple it is. I respect that. So wooing me would be easy breezy like taking me on a date or indulging in things I like to do.
It is said that the key to a man’s heart is through his tummy. What would you cook to impress your man?
I am a strong believer of this. Well, my man is someone with a discerning palate and has a knack for different flavours. My culinary skills are not that good because I don’t cook often but yes, if I have to then I’ll cook some grilled chicken with a fancy dip.
What according to you is one romantic getaway destination that one simply cannot miss out on?
I am neither a beach person nor a mountain lover but someone in the middle. What holds prime importance for me is the person whom I’m spending my time with. The place doesn’t matter, it’s about being together no matter what the destination might be.
When Sanjeeda unwinds, what does she indulge in?
My idea of unwinding is to take a break from the monotonous routine and meet my near and dear ones. I love spending time with my family. As I am mostly shooting, I barely get time to be with them and when I’m not on set, I quickly plan a get-together with people close to me.
If you could have one cheat day and eat anything without any consequences, what all would you indulge in?
Every day is a cheat day for me, but a healthy cheat day. I cannot follow a diet routine because I love to indulge my taste buds with every possible flavour. People around me wonder how I refrain myself from workouts and strict diets but that’s the truth.
What projects you are currently working on?
Well, there is something which I’m working on right now, you guys will get to know about it very soon and I can only say that 2020 is going to be special for me and the audience who loves me.
Every day is a cheat day for me, but a healthy cheat day.
What is your style mantra?
To be cool, comfortable and confident.
Quality of life or quantity of life?
Quality of Life
Dark Chocolate or Milk Chocolate?
What’s your biggest pet peeve?
What celebrity would you rate as a perfect 10?
Ranveer Singh is a 9 and Robert Downey Junior is a 9.5
What is your biggest addiction?
I am quite a controlled individual, so I am not addicted to anything.
What would you prefer soap operas or web series?
What food do you crave most often?
Sanjeeda: the actor or the dancer?
How would you describe the perfect kiss in 3 words?
Hot. Hot. Hot
Favourite Super Hero: Krrish
Favourite Accessory: Earrings – Hoops
Favourite Holiday Destination: New York
Favourite Pizza Topping: Not a pizza fan
Favourite Cocktail: I am a teetotaller
Favourite Film: Kabir Singh