Deep End is a coming-of-age culture-clash romance drama about a young Indian woman, living in Durban. Sunitha Patel wants to find her own way in the world, even if it means making waves in her society. The film is directed by Timothy Eubulus, stars Carishma Basday and features rising star, Suraya Santos. Having played in Broken Darkness and Free State, Santos has a full line-up of films currently in post-production. We caught up with her to find out a bit more about her part and Deep End.
How did you come to be involved in Deep End?
My agency sent me sides for the character, Nina. I did a self-tape and a few hours later I had got a phone call from Jacintha, our producer, offering me the part of Nina Roberts.
Tell us about your character, Nina Roberts?
She’s a strong, mixed race and a quick-witted young lady, who tries hard to fit in but was really born to stand out.
What was the vibe like on set?
Lots of fun, very chilled compared to most sets I’ve been on – there was never really a bad day. Some days we did rush to get the shot done due to the weather changing, but other than that, the cast and crew got along like family. Especially for me, I went on to do a job and tell a young lady’s amazing story and I got to leave with people I think will be lifelong friends.
What do you think is the underlying message of Deep End?
It’s all about family… how with the support of your loved ones, following your dreams can be an amazing thing.
Did being involved in a surf movie make you want to pursue the sport at all?
I really hope that one day I’ll be able to call myself a “surfer Cherrie” but first I think I’ll actually need to learn how to swim before anything.
What would you say you learned from your time shooting Deep End?
I learned more about Durban, about my Indian roots, some Durban slang. Most of all I learned how people can have such a big impact on your heart even after knowing them for a short time.
You’ve appeared in a number of local productions and based on your upcoming slate, it seems as though your career is taking off… what do you put this down to?
Hard work, perseverance, sacrifice on a “personal life”, a supportive family and by the grace of God.
What sort of film roles are you looking for going forward?
Being a storyteller is something truly out of this world, picking your own parts are rather difficult, almost near impossible. For now, I don’t mind the character or roles I play, it’s the story itself that needs to hook me. If it has heart, I can give my heart to it.