Tapsee Pannu is on a high with the success of her last release, Pink. “I am working on my next film Naam Shabana, and that’s celebration for me,” says the actor.
“I am glad that some good work is coming my way. It’s been tough for me to get good subjects, as people in the Hindi film industry haven’t seen much of my work and think I am relatively new,” she adds.
Tapsee was a software professional, became a model, and has acted in over 20 films in southern languages in the last six years, “which is why people treat me as a newcomer,” and she has to convince people that she can deliver in a film. “I am in all possible ways an outsider, as I don’t have filmy friends or a Godfather or have 3 or 5 film deal with a studio,” she adds.
While many might not have known of her earlier, film-maker Shoojit Sircar cast her in a film with Amit Sadh called Running Shaadi, which hasn’t released yet and that resulted in her being cast in his latest hit film, Pink. Tapsee debuted in Hindi films with Chashme Baddoor (CB; 2013) and later did in Neeraj Pandey’s Baby (2015).
“All my films have a ripple effect. Funnily enough, I have never passed an audition in my life. Perhaps the films I do are like auditions for the makers to cast me in their next. I am proud that I debuted with CB (2013) and I was looked upon as a commercial mainstream heroine. Had I done Baby or my latest film, people would have thought of me as off-beat or artsy heroine,” says Tapsee, who is shooting for Pandey’s next production Naam Shabana.
Working with senior actors such as Amitabh Bachchan and Akshay Kumar isn’t nerve-wracking for Taapsee. “I never dreamt to become an actor and didn’t have a fascination for the film industry. So, while working with these stars, I wasn’t star- struck. There was no nervousness. Sure, there was pressure to deliver,” says Taapsee.
Balancing her Hindi film career and films in southern languages is a challenge for her as in Bollywood, “makers plan in advance and block my dates”. “I have cemented my position there and will continue to do films in the south. I am doing a bi-lingual film in Telegu and Hindi too. You will see a lot of Tapsee in the next year, maybe an overdose too,” she quips.
In an earlier interview, the actor had said a relationship between an actor and an actress doesn’t work. When asked to explain, she says, “I believe that there can be only one star in a relationship. I am talking for myself. I can’t talk films at work, and then back home as well. I need a clear demarcation between my professional and personal life. It has been my effort to not mix the two. I have a life apart from my work. I feel your career is part of your life, and there are many other parts that make your whole life,” she says.