Rhea Chakraborty, whose last release Jalebi was quite a success, feels that the acting profession is inherently uncertain. And while having a background in films helps to some extent, it’s not easy to survive in the industry without hard work. The actress appreciates the element of honesty in dating, and finds a good sense of humour a fascinating attribute in a man. Here we get candid with the young woman on her journey so far and her thoughts on Valentine’s Day.
Ever since your Bollywood debut in 2012, every film you have done has been of a different genre. Was that a conscious decision?
Honestly, it was not a conscious decision. However, different kinds of roles have always somehow come my way, and I’ve been brave enough to take the opportunity without thinking too much. I’m glad that people have noticed it though.
How hard is it to survive in B-Town without a background in the industry to back you up?
I think it’s hard both ways, but without a family it’s slightly harder because the opportunities that children from filmy families get are somewhat more than others. But at the same time, I think the industry has been quite nice to me. It’s hard in the sense that it’s a very uncertain profession; even the top actors who’ve been working for 20-25 years don’t know if their film is going to work or not. So I think the hardest part about being in B-Town is the fact that you need to be okay with the uncertainty that comes with the profession. If that’s something you’re comfortable going to bed with, this is the right profession for you. Otherwise it’s not.
We saw a completely different side of you in Jalebi. How challenging was it to play Aisha?
It was definitely my toughest role so far because I am not a very sad person in real life. I was not allowed to speak to anyone for around three months. I was only allowed to respond in a ‘Yes’ or ‘No’, as the makers wanted to include that inherent loneliness in my system, which wasn’t there before. However, it was also the most fun time for me! I really enjoyed the journey and process of the character.
Would you agree that you are in the most exciting phase of your career?
Well, I hope not because I am hoping that it will get more and more exciting in the future. I think it’s the beginning of a long career and I hope I get to play many different and challenging roles. But yes, it is certainly the most exciting phase of my career so far.
What kind of a man would fascinate Rhea?
Oh, it’s been a long time since a man has fascinated me (laughs). I like guys who are tall, in fact he should be taller than me even if I am wearing heels. Other than that I appreciate a keen sense of humour because if he doesn’t have that, he’s not going to understand mine. I would definitely prefer someone who’s alive and kicking, rather than someone who’s serious and boring.
One dating tip you’d like to give to today’s youngsters?
Be honest. I think it’s very important because I feel that everyone has the right to know if you are with them or want to be with them. Both men and women appreciate that, but we underestimate the power of the opposite sex (person) to understand honesty.
How challenging is it to strike a balance between taste and health for you?
I’m obsessed with good-tasting foods, particularly with Besan Ka Ladoo, which I absolutely love. I do not like to hold back too much when it comes to good food. But at the same time, I do make sure that I hit the gym or work out everyday, whether it’s kick-boxing, functional training, yoga, or karate. I understand that I need to strike a balance between eating and working out, and I honestly also enjoy the process.
Do you think a guy should always ask a girl out?
No, not at all! I think if you are looking at equality then girls should also ask the guy out. I feel that it is completely up to the equation between the two people. I personally don’t wait for the guys to make the first move.
Most romantic thing you can do for someone?
Surprise them with their favourite food when they least expect it.
‘I just asked someone to be my Valentine’s date but they said no’. Complete this sentence:
Luckily that has never happened to me (laughs)!
Completely nuts, enthusiastic about life, love pizzas, and very emotional!
Five things you won’t leave home without?
Portable charger, rose water spray, perfume, wireless headphones, and the book I am reading at the moment.
What’s in your travel beauty kit?
Sunscreen, coconut oil, rose water spray, a nice face pack, and lip balm.
Who are your beauty icons?
Audrey Hepburn and my mom. --- as told to Jaideep Pandey (connect with him: @PandeyJaideep @jdpjournalist