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'I will not wear a bikini in any film'

Saturday, October 04, 2014

‘Frankly I’d say that though I had actually strayed onto the film scene purely by accident, today I would not know what to do, if I had even a single day free without shooting. Destiny made me an actress. I was smug as a star daughter and studying for fashion designing when Salman Khan, who is like family to me goaded me to be fit and shed my weight and encouraged me to try my hand at acting and even offered me ‘Dabangg’ his own home production’, Sonakshi Sinha tells Jyothi Venkatesh in a freewheeling interview.

Four of your films have collected 100 cr plus – ‘Dabangg’, ‘Rowdy Rathore’, ‘Son of Sardar’ and ‘Dabangg 2’. Do you smell whether a film will collect over 100 cr when you sign it?
I do not think any one feels while signing a film, whether it will fetch 100 cr at the box office and then only decides to accept it. When I sign a film, I think about what my role is and what my performance ought to be and not whether it will fetch the producer 100 crore plus or not. No one thinks that way in the film industry.

How would you evaluate your growth as an actress from ‘Dabangg’ to ‘Holiday’?
I have been part of 11 films in a period of four years till date – ‘Dabangg’, ‘Rowdy Rathore’, ‘Joker’, ‘Oh My  God’, ‘Son of Sardar’ ‘Dabangg 2’, ‘Lootera’, Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai’ ‘Dobaara’, ‘R Rajkumar’, ‘Bullet Raja’, ‘Holiday’ etc and two films in special appearance like ‘Boss’ and ‘Himmatwala’. With every film in which I am acting, I think I am learning more and more by trial and error method since I am not a trained actress and thirst to learn more and more. I learn by acting with new technicians, new actors. You keep growing with each and every film that you get the opportunity to be part of.

Would you say that you are enjoying your phase in the film industry right now?
‘Kal kya hoga mujhe bilkul pata nahin hain’ but I would not at all hesitate to state that I am enjoying the phase with which I am in the industry right now ever since I had made my debut with ‘Dabangg’. I do not think I will ever let myself burn out by ageing to do more films than what I am humanly capable of. Having worked with the best of actors, technicians in the industry, I feel I am blessed though let me confess that I cannot look at myself critically and actually look up to my mother for critical comments. My father loves me and thinks that whatever I do is the best while my mom sits with me sometimes when I listen to the narration of any film. I take my mum’s opinion very seriously and the best part is that my mom is very honest about whatever she feels and tells me frankly.

After you opted out of Kamal Haasan’s ‘Vishwaroopam’, you do not seem to have any Tamil film in your kitty!
Though it is sad that I couldn’t do Kamal Haasan’s Tamil-Hindi bilingual film ‘Vishwaroopam’ when it was offered to me, it does not mean that I am averse to working in films down South. In fact, right now, I am excited about having been signed on for ‘Shivam’, a period Telugu film directed by Krish Jagarlamudi in which I have been cast opposite Mahesh Babu. It was sweet of Prabhu sir to have insisted that I meet the maker for a narration and do the film if I liked the script. ‘Shivam’ is a pure commercial entertainer, being produced by Ashwini Dutt under his own production house. If I get the right offer, I am game to be part of more Tamil and Telugu films.

Is it true that you demanded Rs.5 cr to act in ‘Shivam’? How important is money to you?
Am I mad to ask for such a sum when I liked the script when it was narrated to me? I still am living comfortably with my parents. Money has never been an issue for me. I do not look at the size of my role when I sign a film. When I sign a film, I crave to do something different.

You are Rajanikant’s heroine too!
Yes. I am playing Rajanikant’s leading lady in his next film ‘Lingaa’, directed by K.S. Ravi Kumar. Besides ‘Linga’, I am also part of ‘Action Jackson’ in which Ajay Devgn is my leading man and Prabhu Devaa is the director and producer Sanjay Kapoor’s ‘Tevar’, a remake of the Telugu hit ‘Okkadu’ in which Ajrun Kapoor is my leading man.

How averse are you to go in for a glamorous image make over, since you run the risk of getting stereotyped as an actress, with your resolve to wear only traditional costumes in all your films?
Who says that I am not ready to sport glamorous costumes? I am ready to sport glamorous costumes, because I am essentially a jeans and T-shirt girl of today in normal life off the screen. Though glamour has become an integral part of Hindi cinema today, I am not ready to appear in a bikini in a film. If the audiences have readily accepted me in traditional and decent costumes in ‘Dabangg’, why should I wear a bikini?

Though ‘Dabangg’, ‘Joker’, ‘Dabangg 2’ and ‘R. Rajkumar’ were original Hindi films, ‘Rowdy Rathore’, Son of Sardar’ and ‘Holiday’ were remakes of South Indian hits! Do you make it a point to watch the original films to know how the actress has etched her role in it?
I confess that I am not at all averse to watching the original hit versions of any film when I am offered the opportunity to work in the remakes. ‘Rowdy Rathore’ was the remake of the Tamil hit ‘Siruthai’ and the Telugu hit ‘Vikramarkudu’. I made it a point to see how Anushka Shetty had acted in ‘Vikramarkudu’, though I did not get the opportunity to watch the Tamil version ‘Siruthai’ or ‘Son of Sardar’, which was a remake of the Telugu hit ‘Maryada Ramana’. I made it a point to interpret Anushka’s role in an entirely different manner since Prabhu Devaa, who had not directed either the Tamil or the Telugu version had entirely changed the original subject in such a way that it would be palatable for the Hindi audiences, by weeding out the inherent nativity in both the versions.

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