What’s it like to play Dhoni’s girlfriend in a leading battery commercial?
Oh great! After working with him, I realised that he is a better actor than a cricketer (laughs)! I even told him that ‘It doesn’t seem like you are India skipper, Dhoni.’ I was bowled over when he responded by saying, ‘I am not Dhoni; I’m his dummy!’ In fact, Ishant Sharma was also part of the commercial and he, too, is extremely sweet.
Will it be a sixer if the ODI skipper proposes to you?
No way. It’s good to watch him play on the field. Off it, he is so caught up with endorsing that there won’t be any time left for me (laughs).
Will you be a taker for Dhoni the model or Dhoni the cricketer?
Dhoni, the model, of course.
And do you know which team he’s part of in the IPL?
Is it Chennai? I am not too sure! Can’t see beyond Sourav in cricket.
You were playing the lead in Meghbalika. But you seem to have disappeared from the small screen after that...
I enjoyed playing Shalmoli’s role in Meghbalika. I had even cut down on print ads and commercials during that period. But after three years, I thought I would shift to Mumbai, where my family was. Besides, there was nothing much to do in Tollywood. Frankly speaking, Bengali movies are not my cup of tea. Offers did come from Ravi Ojha, for his megaserial Mohona, and from Agnidev Chatterjee, but those weren’t meaty enough.
Do you feel then that Bengali movies are not up to the mark?
It’s not that. Bengali films are not for me. I want to work with Riingo though. I feel he is a promising director.
People say it’s tough in Mumbai...
It’s tough everywhere. But there are plenty of opportunities in Mumbai. Even an extra in a
commercial, draws nearly Rs 25,000 there. I’ve had to turn down many offers because I believe in quality not quantity.
Why have you declined offers in Mumbai so early in your career?
I said no to an ad with SRK for a leading computer company because it was a blink-and-miss role. I regret having done a hair oil ad with Deepika Padukone, because all I had was one dialogue and a good frame. I also opted out of a hair removing cream ad which had Kareena Kapoor. Insignificant work hinders careergraph. You know, I got an offer to feature in Sonu Niggaam’s music video but I preferred not to take it because I’d have to sport a costume similar to Zeenat Aman’s in Satyam Shivam Sundaram. I’m not so insecure that I’ll say yes to anything that comes my way. I’ve even said no to big screen offers.
What kind of roles were you offered?
Ram Gopal Varma’s assistant is making a film, for which he approached me. But I had to wear a bikini for one of the scenes and I declined. Samar Khan requested me to do an item number for his film Shaurya, but I don’t want to start my career being an item girl. Rozza did the number. I want to be like Rani Mukerji or Kajol not Mallika Sherawat. I declined a lead role in a megaserial called Meri Devrani as it was a three-year contract. I don’t want to bind myself in a bahu’s role for that long!
Are you flaunting a full kitty now?
By God’s grace, yes. I will be playing a lead role in a Tamil film. Other than that, I have been shortlisted by directors like Shivam Nayar and Rajat Kapoor for untitled big screen projects. I’m keeping my fingers crossed! And thanks to Mumbai models who are not very comfortable wearing saris, I’m doing a lot of sari ads! I am also the brand ambassador of a leading jewellery brand. So, all’s well on the workfront as of now.
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