If you weren’t an actress, you would have been...
Probably a copywriter in an advertising agency.
From playing Shanti to Nikki in 24, what has your journey been like?
It’s been brilliant. When I played Shanti, people saw me as just Shanti. When I anchored cricket shows, I was seen as just a host. But as Nikita Rai, the appreciation is very gratifying. I am getting a lot of acting offers again.
What’s better, acting or hosting?
I enjoy both. Anchoring or doing anything live is thrilling. But acting and playing different characters is also amazing.
Did you always want to design saris?
I have worn saris a lot over the years, so designing them was like a natural progression. I do believe that saris and I have a special bond.
How has motherhood changed you?
It’s done the impossible: it’s made me more patient.
The best thing about marriage.
That I always have someone who looks out for me. I am blessed to have Raj in my life.
The best thing about working with Anil Kapoor.
His energy, his passion and the love for what he does. His sincerity towards his job is absolutely inspiring.
A black sari or a little black dress, what works for you?
A little black dress. And a colourful sari!
The craziest thing you have done.
Holding a snake around my neck at the Singapore Zoo. I flew to the country for a few hours just so I could be part of the activity.
A dessert that describes you.
Your fitness fundas.
Don’t eat chocolate. I circuit train three times a week and run 10 km once a week.
Your favourite co-star for a romantic film.
I’ve only done one romantic film, Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, and I didn’t get my man there. So, I would like to give it another shot. Are you listening, SRK?
Your favourite family destination.
Singapore for a fun family holiday. South Africa also has so much to offer.
What turns you on?
What makes your day?
Happy, positive energy from people who matter.
What ruins it?
The last line of your autobiography would read...
"I lived my life well. And to the fullest."
Sexiest actor in Bollywood
A film you have seen more than five times.
The most overrated film.
The most paisa vasool film.
A movie that was a part of your childhood.
Guide, Golmaal, Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron
The first movie you saw on the big screen.
BIRTHDAY: April 15
SUN SIGN: Aries
PLACE OF BIRTH: Kolkata
HOMETOWN: I am a pan-Indian citizen. A Punjabi, born in Kolkata, lived in Delhi for a few years and then was brought up in aamchi Mumbai.
FIRST BREAK: When I was offered the lead role in the daily soap Shanti (1994).
HIGH POINT OF YOUR LIFE: Oh, there are so many. But I think playing the lead role in Shanti changed my life.
LOW POINT OF YOUR LIFE: They are a part of life. I just choose to not dwell on them.
SCHOOL/COLLEGE: The Cathedral & John Connon High School, Mumbai. I did my graduation and post-graduation from St Xavier’s College and Sophia Polytechnic respectively.
CURRENTLY I AM...
Taking a breather and spending time with my two-year-old son. I deserve it, considering I just finished Season 1 of 24 and also launched my line of saris.
Interviewed by Veenu Singh
From HT Brunch, January 26
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