You are an exception, you get more and more work as a leading lady after marriage?
I never really worried what would happen if I get married, I choose acting as a profession and never viewed my role whether I should be doing this or doing that, whether I should do this later, I never said that ‘hey I am just out from college give me four songs and miniskirts to jump around, I need a girlie role or a mature role for that matter’. It’s the director’s vision of what they see in me. Ashutosh used to joke during Jodha Akbar, he used to say in first poster I put Aishwarya Rai in the next I put Aishwarya Rai Bachchan. I have worked with both (laughs). Nobody came to me and said ‘hey you are now married now what to do’.
Ramu, Ashutosh, Mani Sir, Sanjay, Shankar all had their vision about what role would suit me. I never had a mind set and thankfully I met likeminded people otherwise it would have been difficult to work. Shankar had this idea ten years back and he came back to me for this role. I would love to do role of my age and having said that I am thank full for all the directors for keeping the faith in me.
What the secret that makes you top the Indian film industry most reckoning list of actress?
Thank you very much. I am an actor and my directors cast me. I am the same girl who did ‘Iruvar’ and didn’t say I need four songs and in Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam, they gave me the Best Actress Award. I didn’t made a jig by saying that I am not the age to play the role of a women who is madly in love with someone gets married to a another man and undergoes a transformation where she understands the values of marriage. My career graph makes a statement and I am thankful to everyone for that. I am happy with the choices I had made and by doing that I am not deflating others choice.
So what’s your role in Robot?
I play Sana a live wire character in this film and I’m glad to be a part of a full fledge commercial movie, my previous films where entertaining but not an out and out commercial as this one.
Do you believe Robot can be real?
We do have an image in mind since childhood about Robots who can do things for us. But here Shankar has redefined Robot through the medium of cinema and made him into a character having human traits so you start developing feelings for this Robot and Sana feels the same for this Robot in the film.
So who’s romancing whom in ‘Robot?
(laughs) For that you will have to watch the movie to find out who’s romancing me and whom I am romancing.
Rajni Sir thanked you publicly for being his heroine in the film, what’s your reaction?
It’s a pleasure and honour to work with such a legendary actor. Rajni Sir thanked me in public and by doing so he humbly and humorously answered all the questions that where arising regarding the cast and those which would have come to anyone’s mind. It’s being a memorable experience to work with such a personality. Rajni Sir is very demanding as a professional and a very humble human being.
You have worked with Shankar before in Jeans, what are his strong points?
Shankar is a visionary; he redefines the word magnificent each time. He is so organized, detailed about the technicalities and very supportive. With Robot he has pushed Indian sci fiction to an international level without ignoring the Indian sentiments.
How comfortable you are with Tamil now?
I am very much confident than the Iruvar days. I can understand, read but I don’t take the risk of breaking into a conversation. Shankar had been a great assistance and help. Rajni Sir used to comment “What Tamila”, and I use to request not to flatter me.
How do you take the unfavourable response in spite of doing quality work like ‘Raavan’?
Nobody makes a film knowing that it would not be accepted. So much of effort is involved. If the result is favourable then its turns into a blessing otherwise it’s becomes an experience to learn from. Now this interview is happening and if people don’t read this then obviously it will feel. We are entertainers and it’s amazingly wonderful to see that people continue to support you and welcome you with the same warmth and support that motivates you to do good work.
Impressive lineup for 2010, you have a great year ahead?
I hope people appreciate our work in this magnificent spectacle ‘Robot’ and enjoy. Our job is to entertain as I said earlier and keep on doing the good work whenever we get the chance to do so.