Fashion is a form of self expression - Amyra Dastur

Bollywood actress Amyra Dastur, who made her cinematic debut with Issaq in 2013 is admittedly in love with Bollywood. With quite a few blockbusters to her name already, she is currently keeping herself busy with projects down south. “It’s the adaptability of the Indian film industry that is its biggest strength,” she believes, and while Bollywood is her first choice, she is also open to doing short films and films in different languages. The B-Town celebrity, who is a lover of high fashion, will next be seen in Kaalakaandi. Read on to learn more about her upcoming projects.

How was the experience of sharing screen-space with Jackie Chan in Kung Fu Yoga?
It was a dream come true. Many of us dream of meeting our childhood heroes and fortunately I got the honour to do a movie with him, which is just insanely awesome! I still look at all the selfies and behind the scenes footage just to make sure it was all real and not a dream (laughs).

What according to you has been Bollywood’s biggest strength in its 103 year journey?
I think it’s the ability to adapt. Bollywood has been beautifully flexible and very open to different types of cinema. Every decade has its own feel and vibe, which is unique in its own way. That’s why I love Bollywood; it keeps giving you something different.

From modelling to acting, how hard has the transition been? And which is more special to you?
I only started modelling so that I could act. Modelling is easier, for me at least and it was definitely hard work but my goal was always acting. Modelling gave me the stepping stone and experience that I needed to get to where I am.

Ups and downs are inevitable in the field of acting. Who do you look up to for support and inspiration to keep moving forward?
My family and friends and even my team have been my pillars of support. I find inspiration in everyday things, more like I look for inspiration everyday to keep myself motivated and keep my mind from wandering off. I keep myself busy on days when I’m not shooting by going for my diction classes or dance and gymnastics.

What was the turning point in your career?
Anegan. It was my first Tamil film, opposite Dhanush. It was a 125 day schedule which was shot over the course of one year, and I learnt a lot from both my co-star and director. I also received a lot of critical acclaim and mass appreciation and that gave me the confidence I needed.

What’s the best part of being a Bollywood actress?
I no longer have to wait in line at Starbucks (laughs)!

Having walked the ramp as a showstopper at Lakme Fashion week earlier this year, how important do you think fashion is as a medium of expressing oneself?
I love fashion and I truly believe that it’s a form of self expression. What I don’t love is the nasty criticism that follows. I see girls getting down when people criticise their taste and I find that really unfair. People dress the way they want to depending on their personal likes and dislikes; why should anyone be allowed to comment on that?

Any plans of working on a short-film or web series, considering they have become so popular now?
Right now my south films are keeping me extremely busy and I’ve also given the Kaalakaandi team a lot of dates for promotions. But I would love to do an amazing content driven web series or short film when I have the time.

What advice do you have for anyone looking to start a career in Bollywood?
You’re going to have a 100 people telling you that you won’t make it and you’ll have one or two people telling you to work hard and keep going. Keep the latter in your life and always believe in yourself no matter who says what. At the end of the day you know what you’re capable of better than anyone else.

What’s next?
I’m currently shooting for two Telugu films and then I’ll join the Kaalakaandi team for promotions.

What’s your go-to look?
Ripped jeans and a white tank top with heels

Your favourite lip colour?
Peach    --- as told to Jaideep Pandey (on #Twitter: @PandeyJaideep)