No more routine roles even in big projects: Kareena KapoorAug 7, 2006 Subhash K. Jha
Mumbai, Aug 8 (IANS) Post-"Omkara", Kareena Kapoor is planning new career moves and says she won't take up any more frivolous films.
"I've decided to take on only roles that challenge me. No more routine roles even in big projects. After 'Omkara', I feel I've reached a stage where I need to build on my reputation as an actress.
"I'm changing my priorities with the audience. I've done enough run-of-the-mill movies. Until I get something as challenging as 'Omkara' I'd rather stay at home and play with my niece Samaira," Kareena told IANS.
Kareena, who is now looking for meatier roles, turned down "Page 3" but has no regrets.
"Good Konkona (SenSharma) did it. I couldn't have done it as well as her. I think I'm more prepared for it now. I regret turning down Shyam Benegal's film."
Were you nervous about "Omkara"?
Anxious. I just want to know how the audience would react to the new Kareena Kapoor. Vishal Bharadwaj has made me over completely. I feel I've been re-born in "Omkara". Vishal's emotions are very real. I did another realistic film, Govind Nihalani's "Dev". But I didn't have much to do there.
But you got tremendous accolades for "Dev".
I know. But I wish more people had seen it. Things have changed a lot since then. Today audiences are far more open to new cinematic experiences. Whether it's an out and out entertainer like "Don" or an intense gripping drama like "Omkara", the audience is ready for any kind of new experience.
What preparations did you make for "Omkara"?
I was definitely anxious during the first few days. But Vishal made it easier for me. You know I don't believe in preparation. But I did one thing for "Omkara" that I had never done before. I gave all my attention to it. This is the first time I've done only one film at a time. I had all the time to focus on my character, make it more real than anything I've done.
You worked with new co-stars.
Yes, Saif and I have only a couple of scenes together. We had worked together in "LOC". My co-star in "Omkara" Ajay Devgan is a fabulous person. I know him from my childhood when he was my sister's co-star. Ajay was involved in the film's production in every way possible. I had most of my scenes with him. Ajay made everything so much easier for me.
Did the challenge of doing something so different scare you?
No. In fact, I've decided to take on only roles that challenge me. No more routine roles even in big projects. I don't mind saying no to anybody. After "Omkara", I feel I've reached a stage where I need to build on my reputation as an actress. It needn't be offbeat or realistic. But I'm all for a film that goes into unknown territory.
I think audiences are tired of watching boy meets girl. They want to know what happens after that. If you look at recent hits like "Rang De Basanti" and "Fanaa", they've all gone beyond expectations.
I'm changing my priorities with the audience. I've done enough run-of-the-mill movies. Until I get something as challenging as "Omkara", I'd rather stay at home and play with my niece Samaira.
So you're starting afresh?
Absolutely. I want to do only the roles that challenge me as an actress. It doesn't have to be something that centres on me. But I must have something interesting to do. Even if I've to wait for a year I'm willing to do so. If I had the guts to start my career with "Refugee", I can very well do something unexpected at this stage of my career.
But you had gone from natural to glam-doll in your second film.
That's because "Mujhe Kuchh Kehna Hai" happened to me after "Refugee". I needed to be completely glamorous. Today cinema has changed. So have I.
You've become mellower now?
It's life, my dear. It's taught me to look at the brighter side. Today I'm happy being an actress. It doesn't matter whether I'm in "36 China Town", "Chup Chup Ke" and then in "Omkara", all in one row.
Why was there so little of you in "Chup Chup Ke"?
Ask Priyadarshan. Thank god, no dubbing (she played a mute character). But "Omkara" has me speaking in a different accent and dialect. But Ajay and Konkona have a much tougher dialect than Viveik Oberoi and me. The dialogues are so well written by Vishal.
Do you like being a role model for urban youngsters?
I think youngsters like me because I believe in myself. I try to achieve what I have to. Youngsters identify with that. I'm ambitious. I came in the industry to achieve something. And, sorry, I'm not going to leave until I achieve it even if I'm pushed out.
Whom did you bond the best with in "Omkara"?
Konkona is such a lovely girl. We're still in touch even after the film. She's so casual in spite of being such a good artist. She's effortlessly good in her scenes. I was supposed to do her role in "Page 3". Good she did it. I couldn't have done it as well as her.
Would you do "Page 3" today?
I think I'm more prepared for it now. I regret turning down Shyam Benegal's film too.
So no Kareena after "Omkara" for a long time?
I'm listening to scripts. And I have a cameo in Farhan Akhtar's "Don". I had a ball shooting for it. I loved dancing to Helen aunty's song. No one can match up to her.
You just went to Antwerp for a show. Do you think there's an audience for live concerts?
Of course, there is! They're crazy about us in the US, Canada and the UK. Our last concert Rock Stars didn't do that well but there were many reasons for that.
How's your sister Karisma doing?
She's doing well. She's in Mumbai with her baby. She's open to hearing scripts. She wants to play power-packed roles in slightly offbeat films. She's looking her best these days. Pencil-thin and ready to face the camera.
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