By Suneel V. Gaur & Rajesh V. Gaur
In a short span of five years, Anushka has carved a niche for herself in Bollywood, but entering the glamour business was not planned. “It wasn’t planned as I came from Bangalore. We don’t have the influence of films. I didn’t grow up watching films, so it wasn’t a decision to be an actor. But god had something different planned for me,” she said.
Anushka, who celebrates her birthday on May 1, was much appreciated in Yash Chopra’s last film ‘Jab tak Hai Jaan’ and if recent media reports were anything to go by, Anushka was in the shortlist for Hollywood filmmaker Steven Speilberg’s upcoming project. But she refused to comment on it.
We reproduce excerpts from a chat with the vivacious Anushka:
You made a dream debut opposite SRK, signed films with one of the biggest production houses in the industry (YRF)...
(Laughs) Lucky, no? I can’t dispute that. But no one can say that it was just luck. Yes, I did get the perfect break but after that I have slogged a lot. It is also a dream come true. I always wanted to be a young achiever. I started modelling at 15 but that, in my head, was already too late.
Your rise has been sudden but no one really knows much about you.
You are right. In fact, most people, and that includes a lot of journalists and people from the industry, apart from the general public, think I am from Amritsar or Delhi. They say I am a Punjabi. That’s absolutely not true. In fact, my parents are from UP and I was born and brought up in Bangalore. My father served in the Indian Army. We travelled a lot.
What was your first reaction when you were offered Rab Ne...?
I was stumped! Really, when you are getting launched in a Yash Raj film opposite Shah Rukh Khan, I don’t think any reaction is bigger than that. Also, I realised that I wasn’t just a showpiece in the film. I had this big role and I was expected to perform.
You are acting opposite Aamir Khan in Peekay?
Yes I am. I feel so blessed to have got the opportunity to work with Raj Kumar Hirani opposite Aamir Khan.
What is your role?
I play the role of an alcohol addict in the film. I can’ reveal more than that.
How was it working with Raju Hirani?
He’s somebody who can teach you values while entertaining you completely. Such a gentle soul.