I turned 26 this year. My stomach isn’t flat anymore, my hair doesn’t feel as thick and, as funny as it may sound, I’m beginning to feel old! Just last week, there was an ad audition with a requirement for a girl within the age bracket of 16 to 20. I’m technically older, but knowing I could pull off a college girl look, I gave it a go. Dressed in a bright coloured top teamed with a short skirt and a hair band, I nonchalantly scribbled 22 on the name slate. I got selected! They want actors who are either that age or look it. Age is just a number. But my dilemma is… should I lie?
The emphasis on stopping the clock has become a hazard in our industry. Considering I felt the pinch recently, I can now understand why. Actresses are fixated with the 20’s tag. Deepika Padukone, Katrina Kaif, Kareena Kapoor, Kangna Ranaut… they all fake it to make it.
Genelia D’Souza is 21, despite being around for the past six years! Inspiringly, Nargis Fakhri, Imtiaz Ali’s new find is transparent about being 31. In fact it’s a bigger compliment to be stunning in your 30s.
<b1>There is as much beauty in maturity. Actresses in their 30s like Rani Mukherji, Vidya Balan, Kajol and Tabu have always had the edge of experience. Denying ones age, or fighting it by going under the knife, is something we must let go of.
Meryl Streep once said, “I think people look funny when they freeze their faces. That’s just me, to each his own. But I do understand the chagrin which comes with ageing, especially for a woman.” Hollywood embraces seasoned actors like her. I loved Cate Blanchett in The Curious Case of Bejamin Button, a film about ageing that beautifully criss-crosses youth and old age.
Don’t act your age
Every actor has to do it at some point; ‘not’ act their age. Priyanka Chopra in 7 Khoon Maaf, Abhishek Bachchan in Guru, Aamir Khan in 3 idiots! More than playing different characters, playing different ages fascinates me.
Nothing quite opens you up to the potential intricacies of the human condition than studying the nuances of age. I’m currently enjoying switching roles, experimenting with my ‘screen age’. Meanwhile, I will do away with denial and celebrate my real age!