Ambika Mod has detailed her first meeting with on-screen love interest Leo Woodall before being cast as beloved Dex and Em in Netflix’s One Day.
The actress, 29, who plays one of the protagonists Emma Morley, spoke about the ‘close bond’ she formed with Leo, 27, while filming the adaptation of David Nicholls’ novel.
Talking about the Reign with Josh Smith On the podcast, Ambika revealed that there was an immediate connection between the two actors, as she described their “playful” reading, which she says is “really weird.”
One Day follows the story of Emma and Dexter after they meet on their last night at Edinburgh University and the next 20 years of their lives on the same date, July 15.
The two graduates become integral parts of each other’s lives with a series of “will they, won’t they” moments and obstacles in the way of a potential romance.
Ambika Mod has detailed her first meeting with on-screen love interest Leo Woodall before being cast as darlings Dex and Em in Netflix’s One Day (pictured in One Day).
The actress, 29, who plays one of the protagonists Emma Morley, spoke about the ‘close bond’ she formed with Leo, 27, while filming the adaptation of David Nicholls’ novel
For this reason, there had to be a believable connection that was reflected on screen between the two stars who play the characters.
Detailing their first meeting, Ambika said: “I met Leo at chemistry readings and he was the second Dexter I’d read with. He’s so cheeky and charming. He was so open and warm straight away and it felt so easy, the scenes came together. They felt really funny and I think that’s really weird.
“That was really half the battle because I think if it had been done wrong, it would have been a lot harder.” You just can’t fake those things and I’m very grateful to have had an actor like Leo.”
Ambika went on to explain how important it was to her that she and Leo were going through the same type of life-changing role for their first time together.
He had previously played Doctor Shruti in This Might Hurt, while Leo had played Cockney Jack in the second series of the HBO hit White Lotus.
Neither had taken on major leading roles yet and it was the first time both actors had taken on such a large undertaking.
She said: ‘We were both going through something very, very similar. This was much bigger than anything either of us had done before and I think we both felt the same way about the company.
Ambika revealed that there was an immediate connection between the two actors, as she described their “fun” reading, which she says is “really weird.”
“I just remember, especially at the beginning of filming, that it was quite overwhelming and a huge responsibility, not only because of the size of the roles and the size of the project, but also because the book and the characters are so beloved. and we definitely felt that.” .
Explaining how they would support each other, he said: “We were both very open when we were struggling, when we felt like things weren’t right.”
“I remember, maybe I was more outspoken than him, but I came out of every scene saying, ‘Oh, I’m a fucking shitty actor, I should quit.'” I hate myself right now.’
“And he was always very supportive of that, and I hope vice versa.” “It was nice to have someone like that because as an actor you might not always have that.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Ambika opened up about her mental health battle with the condition anhedonia, which is a feeling of numbness in the face of joy.
She said playing Shruti in This Is Going To Hurt made her confront her mental health.
Ambika explained: ”I am an incredibly anxious person and have struggled with depression in the past. There are many experiences of Shruti (in This Is Going to Hurt) in particular that I definitely relate to.
“I’ve never felt suicidal or anything like that, but there’s something she goes through called anhedonia, which is a numbing of pleasure. It’s a numbing of joy. It’s a numbing of everything that ever made you feel alive.” in some way, big or small, and that was something I definitely experienced.
‘I remember in 2019, but I don’t remember most of that year because I felt very depressed and was very numb to the outside world. Like everything in my memory feels a little blurry. And I remember when I was playing Shruti I faced that for the first time.
“I know what it feels like to spend a day when nothing brings you joy and you feel really desperate and a little useless for the future and all you experience are doubts and self-criticism.
‘It’s like a really lonely place and you live in shame. When I researched it, I was finally able to put a label for the first time on what I was feeling and bring it up in therapy and that was really enlightening.’
She said playing Shruti in This is Going to Hurt (pictured) made her confront her mental health.
It comes after Ambika exclusively revealed to the Mail that she initially turned down the role of Emma and turned down the role.
The star explained that she found it to be a “huge, huge undertaking” given that Emma was previously played by a white actress.
She said: “It was definitely originally written as white and previously played by a white actress. “I’m really excited to bring something new to the role, I hope young women who don’t see themselves on screen often see that it’s possible.
Ambika admitted that she wouldn’t have gotten the role ten years ago because of her skin color, saying: “I’m very different to Anne Hathaway, so I never worried about that. Just the fact that I’m not white and I’m going to play Emma.” .
‘I don’t think that would have happened ten years ago. “That in itself is a way of modernizing the story.”
However, we’ll talk about mainstream representation with Josh now that the series has been broadcast to millions of people and is being hailed as the “show of the year.”
She said: “I don’t think you should underestimate the power of seeing yourself on screen from a very, very young age.” I think seeing yourself on screen, seeing yourself in the media is not something that should be underestimated.
“Not only does it fuel your ambitions, it also influences what you think about your appearance and how valued you are in society.” And especially as a young woman, it influences how beautiful you feel or the value you place on yourself in terms of ‘do people fall in love with someone who looks like me?’
“I think there are so many insidious messages that come with your face or people who look like you that aren’t front and center that I think people don’t realize.
“I hope that now that is changing, not as quickly as I think I would like, but I hope that for many young brown women, this (One day) is a symbol that you deserve to be loved, that you matter and you are important, you can go after what you want. you want and you don’t have to be just one thing. I’m so grateful and honored to be able to give that opportunity to young women whether they take advantage of it from this program or any other.”