I'm keen on doing a glamorous, heroine-centric role: Ileana D'cruz

In an interview with Mumbai Live, Bollywood actress Ileana D'cruz shares her views on Raid, working with Ajay Devgn, her competition in Bollywood, future projects and more.

  • I'm keen on doing a glamorous, heroine-centric role: Ileana D'cruz

She comes wearing a golden and black checkered outfit, and a coffee mug in hand. She asks her assistant to get more hot water and then looks at us to start the conversation. There was a lot of excitement in her eyes. Her body language spoke a lot about her jovial and free character. Ileana D’cruz, has by far, been the best actress I have interviewed.

Alright, let’s start, she said, and there began our media interaction for her upcoming film. Raid, starring Ajay Devgn, Saurabh Shukla and others. Here are the excerpts:

What made you choose the film?

Raid is a story that needs to be told. Whenever we hear about any raid, we are only told one side of the story. In this film, we focus on what happens inside the premises etc., which is usually never disclosed in real life reporting. When I heard the real story, I was surprised that it was about an inspector. He has gone through a lot in real life. It is amazing. He is a hero and he deserves a salute. Both the inspector and his wife have a lot of significance in this story. I wanted a shift and change in the characters I have played, but I was concerned because this is not a big role. However, what convinced me was the content and importance of her presence in his life and not the amount of screen space I’d have. The story is strong and entertaining.

Preparation of your character

I like to do roles which give me a fair bit of significance. The role in Raid is not lengthy, but significant. Earlier I had a wrong notion about the role, but on hearing the narration I liked it. My character depicts a strong person in his life. I did not do any research, and I wanted to go with the flow. I did not want any influencing factor in my efforts. This helped me build a chemistry and rapport with Ajay’s character, naturally.

Working with Ajay Devgn

Ajay is easy going. He says he is a lazy actor, but on a set, he is not. We became friends the first time we worked together in Baadshaho, and now we are like buddies. We have a song together titled Sanu Ek Pal where we had to share a romantic chemistry, and romancing onscreen was a bit awkward as we are good friends. We used to crack up every time we did some shots, but later, we made it work. If you observe, romance picturized back in those years was different, and it is not the same as today. Shooting in front of the crowd watching you get close to your onscreen partner was weird, but it all happened.

On the other hand, and just to make it clear, I have always admired Kajol. I’m a bigger fan of hers than Ajay (laughs). I have learnt a lot from her, as she has made a mark with every role.

What do you think about the competition today?

As an actor, I’m blessed to get a chance to play a new character. There is something new every day. I’m happy that there is a healthy competition. I love being inspired by others, as there is always something to look up to and learn from others. Having a healthy competition helps, as it lets you improve and polish your skills.

Do you think you’re looked upon differently than other Bollywood actresses?

Maybe. I have neither noticed anything nor have I ever come across anything in this case. I don’t know what and how people look at me. I’m committed on the set, but once I’m done with my work, I choose to go back to my family and my space. I choose to spend time with my close set of friends. I balance my time between family and work. However, I do not choose to hang out with the immediate industry and that may be why I’m judged in a different way than other actresses.

Have you taken a break from South Indian cinema?

To be honest, Once I did Barfi, I was not offered any South Indian film. When I visited Hyderabad, I questioned my friends in the network. I was offered then, but I still have not got the film I was offered.

Are women objectified in films down south?

I never understood when I was objectified in some films, and I used to feel odd and strange. But today, I have accepted it. Women are objectified in every form of the industry, be it Hollywood, Bollywood or any form of Indian cinema. It happens everywhere, and being a part of such roles are personal choices. It is up to the actress to choose if they want to do the role or not.

Focus on future roles and characters

For now, I want to do a glamorous, heroine-centric role. Coincidentally, my director Raj also has the same opinion. I have some offers and I hope I work on one of it. On the other hand, I’m keen on a horror comedy as well. I’d want to try my skills in content-driven films which entertain people.

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