By Subhash K Jha
BOLLYWWOD: Her new release Hasee Toh Phasee (HTP) has not exactly set the box-office on fire. But Parineeti Chopra’s performance has been unanimously hailed as a tour de force.
And she is over-the-moon with the encomium.
Says the excited actress, “I was playing a borderline wacked-out character. When people had seen the promos they thought I was doing one more vibrant bindaas character. But this one is completely different.”
When told she was getting typecast as the out-of-the-box bindaas rabble-rouser Parineeti jumps to her career’s defence, saying, “To say that I am only playing bindaas characters is I think a very limited way of looking at the characters I’ve played. I mean, just because my character in Ladies Versis Ricky Behl, Ishaqzaade, Shuddh Desi Romance, and Hasee Toh Phasee were unconventional does it mean they are all the same?”
Parineeti wonders how people define the difference in two roles.
“Are people to say I am different in two films when I wear a ghagra choli in one and a bikini in the other? That’s like saying Mr Amitabh Bachchan and Mr Shah Rukh Khan play the same character each time when in fact they are different characters with different shades in every film.Of course no matter who the actor his or her personality is bound to seep into the character.But to me my characters in Ishaaqzaade, Shudh Desi Romance and Hasee Toh Phasee are entirely different. No similarity at all. In the first I was shooting guns all over the place. In the second I was a small-town girl smoking drinking and living-in with her boyfriend. And now in Hasee Toh Phasee I am almost a child in a growup girl’s body.It’s very easy simplistic to slot me .”
Parineeti is very excited about working with director Habib Faisal a second time. “Habib will always be special. He gave me Ishaqzaade.When I did Ishaqzaade with Habib Sir I was new and raw. This time while doing Daawat-e-Ishq with him I understand his craft much better. I think I am much better able to understand what he wants from me as an actor.I don’t have to struggle to understand him. So the work atmosphere is far smoother and we get the scenes done far quicker.”
Parineeeti enjoys working with Aditya Roy Kapoor and Anupam Kher in Daawat-e-Ishq. “We’ve become really close. Anupam Sir is like Aditya’s and my age. We quickly finish our shots and rush to his van. I am already depressed because the shooting is nearly over . I want to do more films with Anupam Sir.”
Having worked with Ranveer Singh, Arjun Kapoor, Sushant Singh Rajput, Siddharth Malhotra and Aditya Roy Kapoor, Parineeti says she ‘s close to all of them.
“But there is a special bonding with Arjun. We spent three months shooting together in Lucknow. Now I’ve spent a lot of time shooting with Aditya in Hyderabad. So these two are my favourites.”
With 7 film to her credit, Parineeti says she is far more alert and anxious.
“Initially I had nothing to lose. But with every passing film there are more expectations to live up to, your own and others.There is a check-list of directors and actors you want to work with. The dreams expand and so do the anxieties.I want to be known for being versatile. So I’ll search now for roles that take me to another level.”
The spirited scene stealer says she doesn’t see any of her contemporaries as rivals. “I don’t really feel anyone is a threat . There is enough room for everybody. That’s how I feel right now. Maybe two years down the line I’ll start peering anxiously over my shoulder. But at the moment I’m happy to be just doing the work that I am.”
Parineeti has no regrets about opting out of Shoojit Sircar’s next film Piku where she was to play the Big B’s daughter.
“The dates clashed with another film. I was so looking forward to it because it gave me a chance to work with two of the finest actors we have Bachchan Saab and Irrfan Khan. Maybe it was too early for me to work with these stalwarts. I’d have probably forgotten my lines and just stared at them.”
As for losing out on the chance of doing a father-daughter film with the Big B, Parineeti says, “I have a very strong father-daughter bonding with Anupam Kher Sir in Daawat-e-Ishq. As for Bachchan Saab, I’m sure I’ll have other opportunities to work with him.”
Says Parineeti, “Audiences saw a new me in Hasee Toh Phasee. Now they’ll see me in an entirely new avatar in Shaad Ali’s Kill Dill. I’ve lots on my plate. Till the release of Hasee Toh Phasee I was shooting two films, dubbing and promoting. There was no time for myself. And I can’t complain. Good scripts are coming my way. Obviously I can’t say yes to every film and endorsement that comes my way.”
About losing out on the popular awards this year, the pragmatic Parineeti says, “Deepika Padukone deserved them. It would have been odd if me or anyone else got them. But I was nominated.And I was very happy.”
Parineeti says she’s entering her best phase so far.
“This is my fourth year in the industry. And I’m doing the work that I am really enjoying.”