In conversation with actress Nimali Delwala | Sunday Observer

In conversation with actress Nimali Delwala

30 July, 2023

This week the Youth Observer reached out to another talented actress, Nimali Delwala. In conversation with Nimali here’s what we found out;

Q: How did you get started as an actress?

A: I never specifically planned to become an actress, I was, however, interested in the arts field. I was working in the travel industry and then I saw an advertisement for a TV commercial for which my mom knowing my interest applied for me and then I went for it and I got it and then I did a few more commercials.

That was the start of my journey in acting. Since I was employed, I missed many opportunities and didn’t get to dip my toes into the industry completely. However, I met Palitha Thennakoon, when I was shooting commercials and he introduced me to Donald Jayantha and through him I was introduced to Ms. Sandhya Mendis. She was the reason why I got my first role in a teledrama, “Jeewithe Lassanai”. This was the beginning of it all for me.

Q: Tell us a little about your journey in acting from the beginning?

A: It was a very eventful and interesting experience. I learnt so much from the amazing people I met over the years. I met Ms. Irangani Serasinghe on the sets of “Jeewithe Lassanai”. And observed her and learnt so much from her. After “Jeewithe Lassanai” I was part of another Tele drama called “Nil ahasa oba”, where I had the opportunity of working with Ms. Samanalie Fonseka and Sriyantha Mendis. Then I was part of many other tele dramas including; “Thimira”, “Vilata Ahimi mala”, “Sakviththo”, “Daasa Oba Mage”, “Waten Eha” and “As”.

In fact I was rather disappointed in the industry for a while, due to the unfair manner in which certain things happen. It appeared to me I was not given the same opportunities as other people simply because I didn’t have the same contacts others had. However, while I had my mind set on departing from acting forever, I was given the opportunity to be in “Kolamba Sanniya Returns” my first film and then I worked in another teledrama “As” and I slowly started to get back into the industry again.

So far I am content with work I am doing, and grateful for the opportunities I have received.

Q: Did you always want to become an actress?

A: Not really. I was interested in arts mostly because I studied dancing - Kandyan dancing and Baratha Natiyam. So I had an idea to be a dancing teacher but I did Commerce for my ALs because my parents were not interested in the dancing idea. Anyway I liked the film industry, I was excited to be able to play different characters and when I was presented the opportunity I took it.

Q: What is your experience with Sri Lankan cinema so far?

A: I have a feeling we are way ahead in the industry now than we ever were. Most of the new comers in the field now are very talented and passionate about the art. Sri Lankan cinema has come a long way and I am so proud to be a part of it.

Q: What is the best project you have worked on so far?

A: My favourite is the role I played in, “Nil Ahasa Oba”, because it was a good challenge and I was also very attached to my role in the film “Kolamba Sanniya Returns” mostly because it was my entrance to films.

Q: What is the best thing about being an actress?

A: I get the love and appreciation of people and also I get to play any character I want, embody the emotions of different people, that I consider to be a blessing.

Q: What do you like more, films or teledramas?

A: I like films the most because it is a very exciting challenge to be able to convince an audience of a character in less than three hours. I haven’t had that many opportunities to be in that many films yet, but I will be delighted to take up more opportunities.

Q: Who is your biggest influence in acting?

A: I love Angelina Jolie. I think she is someone with a big capacity for acting, her style of acting is very versatile. I also really like her sense of style. I am also fond of Jennifer Lopez.

Q: Is there an artist or director you haven’t worked with so far but would love to work with? And why?

A: There are a few. I would like to work with Ms. Jayantha Chandrasiri, Jayaprakash Sivagurunathan, two names that come to my mind.

Q: What are you up to this year?

A: I have been very busy this year. I have a teledrama that is to be telecasted by the end of the year and also a few commercials coming up. Next year I am hoping to be part of a movie. I am very excited for all of these projects.

I thank everyone who has helped me in my journey including Ms. Sandhya Mendis, Donald Jayantha, Hasun Sameera, Shemal Stembo,. Chandana Liyanage, Ravindra Wijerathne, Tharanga Dissanayake and Ranjan Prasanna.