With Disney+ series The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers premiering tomorrow (26th March), Sway Bhatia will be seen in the role of Sofi Hanson-Bhatt where she’ll be starring alongside original The Mighty Ducks actor Emilio Estevez. For Sway’s first regular character role, she plays Sophie Roy in Succession, with the show having won a number of awards including at the Golden Globes, Primetime Emmys and BAFTAs. During the pandemic, alongside filming The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers, Sway was part of the Internet mini-series The Quaran-Teen(s), and she choreographed and appeared in Alexa Swinton’s music video for You, Me and My Purple Docs. Sway answers our questions about being cast as Sofi Hanson-Bhatt in The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers, what she’s looking forward to for the release on Disney+ and playing Sophie Roy in Succession.
You will be starring in the new Disney+ series The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers, what can you tell us about your character and how was it booking your role?
I play the role of Sofi Hanson-Bhatt, and she is a fierce, smart, and athletic girl with many layers to her personality. Viewers will get a chance to see her character grow and develop throughout the series.
When first auditioning, I watched the movies and I got instantly hooked. I loved the whole storyline of bringing the underdog team to the championship. That empowered and inspired me during the audition process. I originally went in for a different role, but got called back for the part of Sofi and then went through a few more rounds, a screen test in L.A. and then, well here we are.
How much did you know about The Mighty Ducks franchise before booking your role, and what drew you to the script?
Prior to my first audition, I was familiar with the trilogy and franchise but watched all the movies before my first audition. I was drawn to The Mighty Ducks because of its inspiring story. I love how our show highlights the value of teamwork. And who doesn’t love an underdog story?
How did you prepare for starting work on the series and what do you remember most from meeting the rest of the cast for the first time?
I personally always start by understanding who the creative team involved is and re-reading the script. For The Mighty Ducks, it was no different. The most fun the cast had was the time spent in intensive training both for the pilot and when we resumed filming in early September. I recall those weeks to be the most memorable because the entire cast got to spend time together for an extended period of time, plus we got to play ice games. We also instantly became an offset family.
What was the series like to film during the pandemic?
As much as we managed to film the entire series, it was not easy at all. The studio set up safety measures with social distancing and constant testing. Masks had to be worn at all times, except when on camera.
But we were all thankful to be able to film an entire series during the pandemic.
Who do you think The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers will appeal to and what are you looking forward to most for the release?
What’s fantastic about the show is that we’re bringing back a legacy from 1992 to an adult audience, as well as introducing the franchise to a new generation of kids who may not know the movies.
I genuinely believe there is something all ages will be able to connect with. With Emilio (Estevez) returning, the original fans will be able to relive those cherished moments. And as far as the younger generation, like most of my school friends, they will relate to other aspects of the series that go beyond the ice.
What are some of your highlights from being in the cast and working on the series?
The biggest highlight was to be a part of the legacy franchise and having the honour to work alongside established actors such as Lauren Graham and Emilio Estevez. Also, I feel a greater connection and accomplishment since my character represents a strong and very confident young woman.
How was it on the set of a Disney+ production?
It’s so magical. I loved every minute of the process. As much as I loved the filming, I found it so cool being part of the marketing campaign. I felt a new level of connection to the franchise that so many are connected to.
Also, Disney+ is very supportive of the show and the cast. It’s also streaming, so you can watch whenever you want, especially during the pandemic. I’m a big Disney+ and Disney fan. I feel so honoured to be on a platform with shows that I admire, including WandaVision, High School Musical: The Musical: The Series, soon our show, and many more.
You play Sophie Roy in the award-winning TV series Succession, what is she like to play and can you say more about her?
Playing Sophie Roy is like being a princess. I get to see the ultra-rich life. I’m grateful that I was brought into a family that doesn’t look like me, and I have to pinch myself every day because I’m on the show, and watching the success is unreal.
How is it having Sophie as your first regular character role and what do you enjoy most about being part of the show?
Yes, that was one of the first characters I booked. I have so many unforgettable memories from the pilot. I was really young, and I just remember it never felt like a job. I knew I was working with a veteran/experienced cast, but I never felt any pressure or nervousness. We have become a family, and the production team reminds me that they have seen me grow up. One of the most memorable highlights I have was travelling to England to film a wedding scene in a castle.
What is the series like to be part of and how is it working with your on-screen family?
It’s likely nothing like you see on screen. Everyone is so approachable and, at the same time, very professional. Also, the cast is very inspiring, and every experience I get on the show is priceless. The show has a relatively large cast that gets along so well. I am always fascinated by all the details that production goes through to keep their ultra-rich vibes. It’s genuinely like the land of make-believe.
Can you tell us about the YouTube series The Quaran-Teen(s)?
It was a creative way my friends and I spent the time to stay connected. Most of the people involved are industry friends that I knew, so it was easy to connect over Zoom calls to discuss ways to bring episodes to relatable situations, especially since so many people were struggling.
How was it filming Alexa Swinton‘s music video You, Me and My Purple Docs?
That was the first time I was asked to choreograph a music video. I have known Alexa since I started my professional journey in NY. She wanted to have a music video to help bring awareness about pollution while still in the middle of the pandemic. It was so challenging, but I loved being able to help. I was able to teach the cast the dance safely through Zoom and then be on-site on a beach to guide and appear in the video.
Your first screen role was as Dev’s Daughter in Master of None, how was this?
I was very young, but one of the main things I remember was that my character was able to do things that parents wouldn’t usually allow you to do.
What do you enjoy doing away from acting and had you always wanted an acting career?
Yes, I’ve always wanted to be in the industry and I love playing different characters. But besides that I enjoy cooking, travelling, and playing and writing music.
What are some of your favourite TV shows and films to watch?
Stranger Things, HSMTMTS, I love Marvel films, and I’ve always loved Bollywood films. WandaVision, Gilmore Girls, and The Office are more shows that I love out of the many shows and movies I enjoy. I hope one day to be able to write my own show or movie.
Do you have a favourite aspect of working on screen?
Getting dressed up and hanging in the makeup trailer is something I enjoy doing on set. Stepping into the shoes of a character is a vital part of acting and it’s even better when you get to bring them to life with your own spin.
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