He may have become a household name courtesy his debut film, Slumdog Millionaire, but British actor of Indian origin, Dev Patel (left) reveals that desi actors are often stereotyped in Hollywood. “If you’re an Indian, you get automatically pigeonholed. What I try and do is break the stereotype
and work for things that are not bound by ethnicity,” Patel, 22, told us over the phone from Los Angeles.
In this publicity image released by Paramount Pictures, Dev Patel plays Prince Zuko in a scene from, 'The Last Airbender'.
Is that the reason why he’s been only seen in two movies since Slumdog — The Last Airbender and The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel? “When I came off Slumdog, it did weigh heavy. It was my first film and it won the best picture (Oscar). I thought where am I going to go from here. So, I’m being selective,” said the actor, who will next be seen in the film, Cherry and the TV series, The Newsroom.
Does he also plan to do Bollywood movies? “I really respect Indian cinema. But I’m not really searching for Bollywood movies. I don’t see myself as the big muscular hero in Bollywood. It’s just a matter of the right character-driven role approaching me,” he said.
With constant media speculations around his life, Patel doesn’t want to be treated like a celebrity. “I’m just like a normal kid. I love movies and music. I’m a big foodie, though it doesn’t show,” said the actor, who loves to unwind “in Mumbai and at the beaches in Goa”.
What I try and do is break the stereotype and work for things that are not bound by ethnicity
I don’t see myself as the big muscular hero in Bollywood. It’s just a matter of the right character-driven role approaching me