‘And Just Like That’ Star Sarita Choudhury On Playing Seema

When filming a Television demonstrate on the streets of New York City, nearly anything can come about. For this week’s episode of “And Just Like That…” Sarita Choudhury experienced to run down a sidewalk in heels, chasing right after an actor enjoying a thief who snatches her character Seema’s prized Birkin bag out of her fingers.

“That scene — shooting in New York City is some thing else. You had persons strolling down the road who thought it was serious, so they commenced chasing soon after him, like, ‘I’ll get it for you, sister!’ Just booking following this weak actor who didn’t get to describe,” Choudhury reported in a modern interview.

Although Choudhury experienced a stunt double if she wanted it, she stubbornly (and painfully) did the entire scene herself. “I’m constantly this idiot: I will usually do it and be like, ‘Oh, it is no difficulty.’ Meantime, all the things is hurting,” Choudhury said. “I was so scared of slipping.”

The scene signifies two encouraging enhancements in the 2nd time of the Max series, the much-discussed revival of the “Sex and the City” franchise. The new year leans additional into the spirit of the original exhibit, and it presents us extra of Choudhury as Seema — one particular of the very best additions in this new iteration (and, to me, underutilized in its initial time).

A glamorous and no-nonsense true estate agent, Seema will become aspect of Carrie’s (Sarah Jessica Parker) circle of friends when Carrie hires Seema to provide the gargantuan apartment she shared with her late spouse, Mr. Massive (Chris Noth). Although the to start with year was a combined bag, it is really hard not to get thrilled when Seema showed up and be remaining wanting to see extra of her.

In the new year, Choudhury was pleased to have the probability to bring out more proportions of Seema, primarily the pleasurable and playful scenes. She observed that in “Season a person, [Seema] was doing work a lot more, but in two, she’s genuinely out and about.” This time, there are much more extravagant dinners and galas the place all the characters mingle, environment the stage for plenty of drama.

Sarita Choudhury in Episode 3 of Season 2 of "And Just Like That..." The glamorous, no-nonsense real estate agent becomes part of Carrie’s (Sarah Jessica Parker) friend group when Carrie hires Seema to sell the apartment she shared with her late husband.
Sarita Choudhury in Episode 3 of Period 2 of “And Just Like That…” The glamorous, no-nonsense real estate agent gets aspect of Carrie’s (Sarah Jessica Parker) close friend group when Carrie hires Seema to promote the apartment she shared with her late spouse.

Quite a few episodes make use of that vintage construction familiar to supporters of the original sequence: We see a character (or several) working with a disastrous day or connection quandary, and then the demonstrate cuts to several of them talking about it over drinks or brunch. Seema has numerous dating debacles during this period. In previous week’s season premiere, she discovers her boyfriend however lives with his ex-wife, a important pink flag. And in an future episode, a dude she picks up at a bar has, shall we say, problems in the bedroom.

“There’s usually a circumstance the place you are like, ‘Oh, what’s this heading to be?’ ‘Oh, who’s that?’ Or, ‘Oh, he’s type of cute, but what’s that?’ Every thing experienced a twist really quickly,” Choudhury claimed of her scenes this year. “I just had a ball performing it for the reason that those speedy turns are so pleasurable for an actor. You have to improve your face pretty swiftly into shock and horror.”

That makes times of physical and situational comedy, like the scene with the bag thief, a entertaining challenge as an actor. “You have to enjoy the starting of the scene, which is: You occur out, you are waiting around, all neat, you acquire out the cigarette — and then it turns really swiftly,” she claimed.

“What I beloved about that scene was she definitely cares about her bag,” Choudhury additional, connecting that minute to something that, to me, is notably refreshing about Seema as a character. As Seema describes in the episode, she ordered the bag after landing her initially major genuine estate offer. All over the series, in Seema, we get to see a female who is having fun with her qualified accomplishment and has no interest in a marriage or a lengthy-term partnership. That sort of character nonetheless feels somewhat uncommon (even more scarce when it is a South Asian female in her 50s).

“You’re so suitable,” Choudhury reported when I pointed this out. “Usually, most folks slide into the pressure of marriage, no make a difference what. But you are appropriate. She’s crying around a bag that she genuinely attained with all her blood and sweat. She’s not crying about a male.”

Getting proudly single can be liberating. But in a globe wherever marriage is often the norm, it is also complicated. “And Just Like That…” explores that as a result of Seema’s character at quite a few details this period in methods steady with the display. For instance, in an upcoming episode, Seema and Carrie make a decision to break up a trip household rental in the Hamptons. “I can’t shell out a different weekend sharing a home with a married friend’s kid’s surfboard,” Seema complains to Carrie.

In an episode afterwards this period, she and Carrie e book massages at a spa — only to obtain that mainly because it’s Valentine’s Day, the spa is only undertaking partners massages. Seema provides the entrance desk man or woman a piece of her head: “Do you have a day set apart the place you ban partners? No? Due to the fact one people today have rights, too.”

Choudhury reported of the scene: “That was so appealing, to genuinely not budge from this difficulty, which I, Sarita, wouldn’t have. I would have given up that argument at the beginning. She actually goes on for — it is at least two web pages of dialogue.”

From Left: Sarita Choudhury and Sarah Jessica Parker in Episode 3 of Season 2 of "And Just Like That..."
From Still left: Sarita Choudhury and Sarah Jessica Parker in Episode 3 of Period 2 of “And Just Like That…”

The scene also offers us a glimpse into who Seema is. Choudhury states she doesn’t really give her characters comprehensive backstories — like, for instance, contemplating what Seema’s daily life was like prior to the start off of the series — and prefers to rely on what is straight in each and every script. (Tv and film writers, such as individuals who labored on “And Just Like That…,” are at present on strike over far more equitable fork out and doing work conditions in the streaming era.)

“So there is an case in point of a scene where by I acquired so much about Seema,” she said. “For me, all which is critical are the words and phrases that are on the webpage, not anything at all else. And my physicality, I’m definitely into the props — I appreciate that variety of stuff. But the words and phrases notify. I can get from the words pretty much what Seema was like as a little one.”

As an actor, Choudhury enjoys the obstacle of obtaining the physicality of a character or placing her individual spin on a line examining. Simply because of that, she tends to be the form of actor who doesn’t make suggestions to the writers about her figures and storylines, she mentioned.

“There’s some thing, to me, golden about getting a script and owning to make it get the job done. I like that problem,” Choudhury said. “So that is how I really like taking part in it. Like, ‘OK, this is the crafting, but I can do nearly anything. I can do something with my body, with my experience.’ So that is wherever I can rewrite it if I have to at all.”

She continued, “They generally say that the ideal acting is when you don’t modify the line and you keep to even the punctuation. There is one thing about when you do that you’re going to uncover your very own way.”

“And Just Like That…” airs Thursdays on Max.