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Waluscha De Sousa On Being Her ‘True Self’ And Going On The Dream Journey

by Panav Minocha

December 29, 2022

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Waluscha De Sousa is  an Indian actress and model who made her debut into Bollywood in the 2016 film Fan. She was recently in the Hindi-language thriller on Sony Liv-Tanaav.

Waluscha De Sousa

Waluscha made her debut into the fashion and modeling industry at the early age of 16. When asked the pros and cons of this early venture into the world of glamour, she replied that she didn’t plan at first to start working at 16. However, she just happened to be discovered at that age by the late fashion designer Wendell Rodricks, and felt extremely fortunate to have worked under his guidance. 

“He held my hand and never let go. I was very very lucky and very very fortunate to have someone like him (Wendell)”, she said.

Having achieved milestones early on in her career, Waluscha mentioned how she became the face of Wendell’s clothing brand, got to be on the cover of a Femina magazine at the age of 17, and starred in a Pepsi commercial with Shah Rukh Khan at the same age. She also talked about how she went onto becoming MTV’s fresh face, and walked in the first Lakmé fashion week in India. She expressed immense gratitude towards Wendell Rodricks for all these achievements. 

“I owe him so much. So much of what I am today wouldn’t have been possible without him. For me, the journey was smooth with a few bumps along the way, but when I look back I’m just very grateful for having somebody like that in my life.”

Waluscha comes from a mixed cultural background, being half Goan-Portuguese (from her father’s side) and half German (from her mother’s side). She was asked how this affected her career, and if it hampered it in any way. Her response:

“Yes and no. I inherited my mother’s external appearance. This helped me immensely in the glamour industry. Although, I am inherently very much Indian and I’ve inherited this from my father.”

She explained how India and Indian culture played a huge role in her life. “I was born and brought up in India, studied in India, and have my friends and family here.“

Waluscha De Sousa

On the other hand, Waluscha also talked about some hardships she faced in the film industry. “Unfortunately I didn’t see the same embrace in the film industry. There was this preconceived notion in everybody’s heads that I was not Indian and didn’t speak the language, or I’m not desi, when it’s actually quite the contrary.” She said that she knew how to read and write in not only Hindi, but having grown up in Goa, was fluent in Marathi and Konkani just as well. “All the work that I’ve done in web-series and films has helped me break this notion.”

Starting her career as a model, Waluscha only later ventured into the film industry. When asked if this was always her goal or if it happened inevitably, she replied that acting was something she always wanted to do. 

“The arts were something which always attracted me. Goa is a land filled with singers, musicians, and theatre. I was always drawn to the stage, and you would have seen me on the stage much more than you would see me in the classroom. It was a space that I really enjoyed and it was always inherently who I was. “

Waluscha also appeared to be incredibly enlightened by the response that her latest series- Tanaav, has received.  

Waluscha De Sousa

“Tanaav has helped me break the notion that I am in some way un-Indian much more than any of my other work done in the past. The response that has come in post Tanaav has been overwhelming. I cannot even describe the feeling. Two days post it’s release, suddenly everyone knew my name, people who matter actually saw and appreciated my work…”

Tanaav is a Hindi-language action thriller streaming on Sony Liv, revolving around conflict in the Kashmir Valley. It is a remake of the Israeli TV series Fauda, which is streamed internationally on Netflix. Waluscha plays the role of Zainab Riaz in the show.

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