After debuting in Tollywood last year, Mehreen Pirzada went on to deliver a highly successful Bollywood film, Phillauri, which hit theatres late last month. Having tasted success so early in her career, this bubbly, vivacious actress is ready to set the silver screen on fire. Here’s what you should know about her.
You made your acting debut with Krishna Gaadi Veera Prema Gaadha in 2016. How did that come about?
I’ve done a lot of commercial ads, so the makers of the film noticed me on the campaigns and called me for an audition. One thing led to another and I bagged the role.
Is there one particular advertisement that served as the turning point in your career?
Definitely the Dove Hair one! It was my first ad, and I was the face of the brand for a couple of months. So that led to offers pouring in.
You also participated in a beauty pageant in Canada and won a title. Tell us about that.
That was during my stint in Canada when I lived there for two years. I had nothing to do apart from school at that point in time. And because I was very tomboyish, my mother wanted me to join the pageant only to get groomed and become more ladylike. So as part of the training for the contest, I was taught ramp walk, etiquette, personality development, grooming, etc. I then went on to win the Miss Personality South Asia Canada, in 2013. It was a great experience.
What was it like to work opposite Nani in your debut?
It was overwhelming – a great learning experience. It’s very challenging to face a star as big as him when you’re a newcomer. But I’m glad that people appreciated and acknowledged me for my hard work.
Being just one movie old, how did you get an offer for Phillauri?
It just happened; they called me for auditions even before Krishna Gaadi... was released. After a series of six rounds in the course of one and a half months, I was on board. Everybody liked my work in the auditions and the way I looked, and thought I was apt for the role. Anushka (Sharma) was like my elder sister on sets. I call her my god sister. She guided me all through and is very possessive about me. Filming for Phillauri and the success and recognition it has brought me have been great!
Modelling or acting…what’s your pick?
Of course acting! I’ve always been an actress. I’m not a ramp model – I don’t have the body type, poise or elegance to be one, either. I believe that you can lie to the whole world, but not to the camera. It captures every small detail of yours. Each one of us is an actor as we play different roles in our daily lives. We are the lucky ones who actually get to do it for a living.
You’re currently shooting for five more films. What are they?
I’m doing Mahanubhavudu opposite Sharwanand, which is being directed by Maruti. Then there’s Raja the Great with
Ravi Teja, Jawaan with Sai Dharam Tej, and another untitled love story with Varun Tej that’s being directed by Venky. I’m also doing a bilingual film, Aram Seidhu Pazhagu, with Sundeep Kishan.
How do you manage all of this?
I’m loving it! My mom once told me that there’s only 24 hours in a day and how you manage your time is the most important. I always have that in my mind. I enjoy this schedule and love being busy and working so much. I get a boost every morning knowing that I have so much to look forward to. I also love being a jetsetter and doing things spontaneously. Whatever I do I give it my 100%.
Being a Punjabi, how difficult is the Telugu language?
It’s not at all! I believe that emotions don’t have a language, and here all I have to do is get my emotions across. Also, if I want to do something I always tell myself that it’s easy. You have to believe in what you do to actually succeed in it. I don’t dub for myself yet, but I will do that soon too. I’m learning the language, and people tell me that I sound like a Telugu girl; but of course my dialect isn’t right.
Like any other girl I like to hang out with my friends in my free time, catch up on my sleep, and travel when I get the chance.
What destinations do you want to visit next?
Bora Bora Island and South America.
I haven’t made any boundaries for myself. I’m a free bird and I’m going to open my wings and fly to wherever the wind takes me.
If not an actress, what would you be doing?
Being an actress is right for me. I wanted to become an aeronautical engineer, businesswoman, and many others, too. But I chose acting because through this I can play any role
I want. ---- as told to Niharika