Tabu talks about her choice of tagda and hatke roles in both Hollywood and Bollywood; also reveals why she prefers to maintain a low-profile.
From pure masala entertainers to meaningful cinema that you have come to be associated with... How do you look back at this transition?
To begin with, there’s been no agenda ever to move away from a particular type of cinema to grow into another type at all. Or to be associated with only meaningful cinema! I have only picked films that felt right at that moment. Of course, over the years you do grow and evolve as an actor, but I never looked at it as a transition from commercial to serious cinema. For me, an actor is an actor, whether you play a glam role or a de-glam one.
Do you feel the pressure of living up to that intense or serious image when signing a new film?
I am aware of the expectations, but I don’t let them become baggage to be carried around. As for the image, that’s the audience perception and I don’t see limiting myself to suit that ever. My criteria of taking on a film is still the same — being a part of a beautiful or a fun experience. I am not out to prove anything!
What drew you to do Ang Lee’s Life of Pi even though it’s not a very long role?
Because I knew it would be beautiful and fun! Also, I love his films, especially Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.
Would you ever want to do a film like that?
Oh, absolutely! I’m game for action flicks any day and if the characters are well-layered then definitely, why not?
Lee said that he has seen several of your films and liked them... Any that you would recommend?
I would love to show him Vijaypath, Biwi No 1, Cheeni Kum and a few others. I love all my films (laughs).
You have been a part of international cinema earlier too, but you prefer maintaining a low-profile about it unlike most actors in B-Town. Don’t you think you’d miss out on publicity?
Kyun publicity karni hai? I agree I am not good at it, but fortunately I have never felt like I missed out on anything because of it. I am very happy with the kind of films I am doing, have done... And all without succumbing to that need of going out and promoting myself. Kabhi zaroorat hi nahin hui!
Why do we get to see so less of you on screen these days?
Let something new or exciting come my way. I don’t want to keep doing the same stuff over and over again. I don’t want to be crying on screen again and again. A comedy or a masala film would be nice for a change now.
What about direction or production?
No way! I am too used to the comforts of being an actor to want to jump into those seats (laughs). Main actor hi theek hoon.