Raindrop on roses: Priyanka Chopra Filmfare Interview

Priyanka Chopra: Raindrop on roses Q. Are you a rain person?
A Yes, I love watching the rain and also getting drenched.

Q. Would you go to the terrace to get wet?
A Yes, it’s like the heavens are crying and crying and crying. I’m a bit dramatic; it’s like a catharsis for me. Also I love sitting by the window and listening to songs on a rainy day with a cup of coffee. There’s something magical about watching the rain.

Q. What songs do you listen to?
A I love all mushy songs. Like Tip tip barsa paani from Mohra. Oh my God, how hot were Raveena Tandon and Akshay Kumar in it! I dig Jaadu hai nasha hai from Jism. There is something so sensual about it.I love the beats in Rehna tu from Delhi 6. My all time favourite song has to be Careless whisper. George Michael wrote that song when he was 17 and that’s when I began my career. The use of the saxophone is incredible.

You’ve been part of two `100 crore films – Don 2 and Agneepath. Does an actress benefit from being part of such a club as usually the hero takes all the credit?
If you’re only a big budget film heroine then obviously it won’t help. We’re in the business of filmmaking. We have to make films that reach out to the masses. That’s what makes you a star. These films bring in a huge audience and holding your performance in a male-centric movie says a lot about you as an actor. You should know how to balance this. Like I’m doing a Krrish 3 which is a total over-the-top movie but at the same time I’m looking for something powerful to do with it. It’s easier to play an author-backed role because it’s written for you. But what do you do when you have only five scenes? Like in Kaminey, I had only eight scenes. It was a male-centric film but then you stand your rounds.

Q. Is it an achievement to be in a `100 crore film?
A All my films are my films even if they feature the biggest actors in it. If you are a commercial actor it’s important to get in the numbers. As an actor you need to balance. I was doing a Don 2 and a Saat Khoon Maaf at the same time. Though Saat Khoon Maaf didn’t do well, it got me critical acclaim.

Q. Chikni chameli from Agneepath was a huge hit. Do you think Katrina Kaif stole your thunder?
A There was no competitiveness between Katrina and me. With the character that I played, I couldn’t have done Chikni chameli. But it took the film to a new level. Chikni chameli was the biggest asset of the film. If Katrina had not come in and done Chikni chameli so beautifully then Agneepath would have been different. But nobody carries the movie alone. Like Fashion did well both commercially and critically. But if it was directed by someone else apart from Madhur Bhandarkar then it wouldn’t have been that big. If Kangna Ranaut hadn’t played the role she did, then Fashion would have had been nothing. So I can’t ever take all the credit. It’s just not about one person.

Q. What’s happening to your music album abroad? Apparently, you’ve given your dates for the recordings leaving producers back home in a lurch…
A My album is progressing well. I’ve been working with some really talented people. But I’m sick of people insinuating that I’ve given my film dates for recordings. How can you just cancel shooting for one and a half month and go off somewhere? Wouldn’t some director turn around and say ‘Priyanka, you can’t do this’ or some producer talk ill about my professionalism considering that I’m doing five films right now? The absurdity baffles me.

Q. When will the album release?
A Within a few months. In the West one song releases first. They call it a single. Then they release another and another… and then the whole album. So we are following that pattern.

Q. Will international stars be featuring in it?
A Yeah, there will be collaborations. But I can’t talk about any of them.

Q. Any Bollywood people singing in it?
A (Laughs) No, I’m Bollywood enough. It doesn’t get better than me.

Q. How is Krrish 3 different from the earlier one?
A During the last Krrish I was a baby. I was two years old in the industry and was excited to work with Rakesh Roshan. (Laughs) I still am but now it feels familiar and homely like Don.

Q. Is there anything different about Hrithik Roshan from Krrish to Krissh 3?
A He’s a committed actor, everyone knows that. But Krrish is also his home production, so he’s involved with every aspect. Just to tease him, I mimic how he puts on his chashma (eye gear). I enjoy irritating him. Hrithik in Agneepath was entirely different from Hrithik in Krrish 3. Here he helps out everyone, from me to Kangna to the technicians. He is almost like an assistant director.

Q. Hrithik is known to be a perfectionist and now that he has so much creative control how is he to work with?
A Actually, he’s a lot more controlled and focussed. Also, Rakesh sir is so clear about what he wants. They make an incredible pair. Rakesh sir’s sensibilities and Duggu’s execution is making Krrish 3 massive.
Q. Tell us more about the Zanjeer remake?
A   I loved the earlier Zanjeer and am really excited that I’m going to be a part of it. I think I’m the actress who gets to act in all of Amitabh Bachchan’s movie remakes – Don, Agneepath and now Zanjeer.

Q. Did you meet your Zanjeer co-star Ramcharan Tej?
A Ya, we met. He was really sweet;he came home with the entire team. They’ll begin shooting first andI’ll join them later. I’ll be adding new shades to the character because she is not an Indian girl. It’ll be exciting working with Ram who is such a huge superstar down South.

Q. Zanjeer is also a male-dominated film?
A Well, when you are the only girl you are the relief in a movie. (Laughs) Especially if you’re me!

Q. Did you have any apprehensions as Ram would be a beginner in Bollywood?
No! Or else I wouldn’t have haddone the film. Because of thekind of work he has done I have no doubts.

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