If luck would have it, Deepika Padukone may well have made her big screen debut with an Imtiaz Ali film. The leading lady of Love Aaj Kal reveals that Imtiaz had approached her with a film offer when she wasn’t even contemplating acting. However, as time passed by, Deepika went ahead and signed Om Shanti Om with Farah Khan. After that she also did Bachna Ae Haseeno and Chandni Chowk To China and eventually went on to do Love Aaj Kal with Imtiaz Ali.
“Yes, strange are the ways things actually happen”, Deepika gets nostalgic here, “Imtiaz had come to me with Love Aaj Kal even before Om Shanti Om had happened. In fact he was very positive about me acting in his film but I was a little unsure if I really wanted to work in films. He went ahead with Jab We Met while in some time I too signed Om Shanti Om. It seems it was written though that we ultimately work together in Love Aaj Kal. So here we are!”
After working in four films over last couple of years, Deepika agrees that through the narration itself, she is starting to get a hang of where a film is actually going. “Fortunately, I keep hearing narrations quite frequently. I meet different people, hear different stories, experience various ways in which filmmakers narrate their subject. This way I am able to develop a reasonable sense of which script may click and which may not. Needless to say, I got a kick out of what I heard from Imtiaz around Love Aaj Kal. I could feel the connect; something that forms the basis of a film that I sign”, she says.
So what does she want in her role other than the obvious ‘connect’ factor? “Well, most importantly my role has to be substantial enough. I cannot be there just for the sake of it even if as a whole the film looks good. Also, money bags don’t quite entice me. I can’t be seen in a film just because it is lavishly made and offers me obscene amount of money. I would rather wait for a very good film to come my way; especially at this stage of my career when I have to make the best choices, even though they may be lesser in number. I have to be extra careful”, declares Deepika.
So what was it about Imtiaz’s narration that made Deepika give a go-ahead for Love Aaj Kal? “Most importantly his narration was quite clean and he was very clear in his mind”, she reveals, “He was very sure of what his story was, how and why his characters behaved the way they did in the film. Also, there was this simplicity factor that really impressed me quite a lot. There weren’t any jargons that he was throwing around or making things look unnecessarily big. I guess being a writer himself, he came with a lot of clarity, something which firmly established in my mind that I had to do Love Aaj Kal.”