Deepika Padukone“>After a smashing debut in Om Shanti Om, Deepika Padukone has grown from strength to strength with each passing film. In a short span, this gorgeous beauty has worked with the biggest of names- be it actors or directors. Deepika is now ready with her latest release Desi Boyz where she is paired for the first time opposite John Abraham. In an exclusive interview with Bollywood Hungama‘s Nikhil Ramsubramaniam, Deepika talks about the Desi Boyz experience, sheds some light on her enviable line-up of films and also sportingly takes part in a quick rapid-fire discussing all the co-actors she has worked with. Read onâ€¦
When you were first offered Desi Boyz, were you a bit skeptical considering the film revolves more around the 2 male leads (Akshay and John)?
Noâ€¦I don’t think so. Somewhere at the end of the day whatever Akshay and John do in the film is for the girls in their lives and so in that sense it’s completely justified. More than anything I look at any film in totality and Desi Boyz for me is a fun entertaining film which I wanted to be a part of.
You are working with John Abraham for the first time, how has been the experience?
John is a wonderful co-star. He is extremely charming, very protective of the people he works with and so he is always making sure that everyone around him is comfortable and happy and that’s a very endearing quality about him.
Tell us a bit about your character in the film?
I play Radhika Awasthy, a girl who is born and brought up in London. She is planning her dream wedding and then all of a sudden her fiancÃ©e loses his job. What they do after that forms the rest of the story.
How was it working with a new and fresh director like Rohit Dhawan?
Rohit is extremely confident and that kind of gave me the confidence to be a part of this project. He has written the film himself and hence has tremendous clarity on what he wants from his actors. To handle 4 actors and Sanjay Dutt (who has a cameo) in your first film is not easy. It’s really commendable the way he has executed the project.
So many of these stories are being circulated around about you and Chitrangda not getting along together. Why is it that such stories always get circulated when two actresses work together?
What do I say? I guess it’s because the publicist couldn’t think of anything more exciting (smiles)
How was it shooting Desi Boyz in U.K.?
I think London is now very close to my heart. I first shot Love Aaj Kal there and then I have shot many films like Housefull, Desi Boyz and even my forthcoming film Cocktail in London. I suddenly feel like I know the city very well though it was freezing cold while we shot for Desi Boyz.
The music is fast catching up, which is your favourite track?
‘Subah Hone Na Deâ€¦Tu Mera Hero‘
With Akshay and John around, were you the victim of any of their pranks?
Noâ€¦I was a part of their group in fact. It helps if you have worked with Akshay before and I know him well by now so he didn’t pull any fast one on me. I kind of became a part of their plan and pulled pranks on the other unit members.
You started off with a bang with Om Shanti Om and then followed it up with hits like Bachna Ae Haseeno, Love Aaj Kal, and Housefull. However your last few films like Lafangey Parindey, Break Ke Baad, Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey or even Aarakshan didn’t quite click at the B.O. Do you at any point take a pause and introspect what is probably going wrong?
Yeahâ€¦of course. I think that’s very important. Definitely it’s something that plays on my mind. I have also come to realize it does not matter how many releases you have in a year, what matters is the film doing well eventually. For e.g. In 2009, I just had one release Love Aaj Kal but it went on to be such a huge hit that it kinda sailed me through the year. I am not complaining about the number of films I am doing but yes I should be careful about my choices. It’s really difficult to predict what will work at the B.O and like most actors I too go by my gut instinct.
You are on Twitter but hardly tweet? Why so?
I am on Twitter but I only watch and read what’s happening around me (smiles). Honestly, I was forced into it before one of my film promotions. I always knew it’s not my kind of thing because I am a very shy person and I don’t believe in sharing my every move / thought with the world.
You have an interesting line-up of films. Could you briefly tell us a bit about them?
Cocktail is almost through. We just have about 2-3 weeks of work left. It’s a completely pure, beautiful love story and once again I am paired opposite Saif. It’s what I would call a film which has an Imtiaz Ali script with a Homi Adajania twist.
Race 2 – I have just started shooting for the film. Abbas-Mustanji are fantastic with the thriller genre. The kind of importance they give to their female characters is simply amazing.
Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani– I am very excited about Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani. We start shooting in January. In fact I’ve wanted to work with Ranbir and Ayan together since the time I saw Wake Up Sid and I am fortunate that I am getting the opportunity now. It’s a very young happy love story.
Rana– I am not sure about the status of that film. I haven’t heard from them in a while and it’s not right to talk about the film right now.
Finally time for a quick rapid-fireâ€¦ We would like you to list that one most endearing quality about all the co-actors you have worked with so farâ€¦
Shah Rukh Khan– Shah Rukh will always be my most special co-star. He made me feel so important in my first film and he along with Farah Khan really gave me a dream launch pad. Even during promotions, he put me out there and when the film became so successful he gave me a lot of credit by saying that OSO wouldn’t have been the same without Deepika.
Akshay Kumar– Akshay always brings a smile to my face the minute I see him. He is full of mischief and has tremendous energy. I think discipline is one thing we can all learn from him.
Ranbir Kapoor– Ranbir is a fantastic actor, very charming and a great friend
Saif Ali Khan– Saif is very intelligent and can have a conversation about anything and everything. I find that quality attractive about him. I like the fact that he has other interests in life apart from films.
Farhan Akhtar– There is a certain mystery about Farhan. He may not be conventionally good looking but women find him immensely attractive. He is by far the funniest co-star I have worked with. He has a great sense of humour and I think he gets that from his father.
Neil Nitin Mukesh– Neil is a buddy and someone I am really fond of. We got along really well while shooting for Lafangey Parindey. He is my 4 am friend.
Imran Khan– I was a bit apprehensive initially about shooting with Imran because I had heard a lot of stories about how picky and finicky he is. But when we started shooting for Break Ke Baad, I realized that in a lot of ways we are very similar. He has a very wry sense of humour which very few people get but he is again a friend for life.
Abhishek Bachchan– Abhishek and I bonded over food. He is a big foodie and so am I.
John Abraham– John is extremely charming. Akshay and I call him subtitle because he says one thing and means something else. He knows how to make women happy and comfortable on set. He just wants everyone he is working with to be in a happy frame of mind.