Whoa! Journos have run out of rose bouquets and sharp brickbats. They now know her as a feisty woman who can scream into a ’phone about an extra-spicy tit bit. And they also know that she can speak straight, without a p..a..u..s..e. Preity Zinta gets pretty candid with Roshmila Bhattacharya.
Apparently, you’ve agreed to do a cameo in
Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi?
Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi
is a special film, Shah Rukh (Khan) is awesome. Anushka (Sharma) is a lucky girl to be making her debut with him.
You made your debut with SRK too in
That was a 20-minute role. But yes, I’m lucky. Not too many have one dimple. Even you have two. <b1>
Planning to get into film production?
There’s too much on my plate right now. I need time for myself, my family and films. Lately, I’ve been two-timing films, my first love, with cricket. But there should be some announcements soon.
Lost interest in cricket?
I haven’t sold Kings XI though I could have made big money. I’m in it for the long haul. It’s an 85 million dollar investment, I knew we couldn’t break even in three months. But this season I’m hoping to make some money.
Will there be any changes in the team?
Team formation is the coach Tom Moody’s call. He was playing cricket before I was born. And we want to keep the sanctity of cricket intact. But Kings XI will be bigger and better. Last year, our priority was to win or at least be in the top three. This year we aim to have the trophy in our hands.<b2>
Will all the players get five-star accommodation in Mohali this season?
We have a core team of 18 players.. and 11 scholarship players who train with Yuvraj Singh, Brett Lee, Kumar Sangakara and Mahela Jayawardane. If they were moved to a smaller hotel during the shaadi season, I don’t see the need for a hue and cry.
Even Sachin Tendulkar, Sanath Jaysurya and M S Dhoni stayed there when Mumbai and Chennai were down. There were 11 girls in my room one night.. and I slept on the couch. No one spoke about that.
You’ve got yourself a new home in Mumbai?
Yes, I’ve bought a new apartment. It wasn’t a gift just as my IPL team wasn’t a gift. I’ve always bought everything I own.
There’s talk of a December wedding with Ness Wadia.
I’m the master of my destiny. No one else decides whom I’m dating, breaking up with or getting married to. Idle minds have been doing that for me for a while now and I’m angry. I’ve been honest earlier.. now I’ll keep everything to myself. Shhh!
In the promos of
Heroes, you’re shown driving a tractor… any special direction for that?
Nope. It took me five minutes to learn. A tractor is not a Ferrari or a jet. The brakes are hard, there’s no power steering, it doesn’t fly but it was still a joy ride.. and I could play a pukka Punjabi girl.
And roll out perfect chapattis.
I may not know how to cook up stories but I can cook food. I make great biryani, kadi chawal, rajma chawal, Italian cuisine and perfect chapattis.
But you only have a 10-minute cameo in the film, like the other stars?
Says who? People will say anything.
No, it’s about our army, our pride, our country. It’s the story of two boys who decide to make a film on why not to join the army. They take a road trip and meet people who change their outlook.
Years ago, I wanted to go to the front and fight the enemy. But girls weren’t allowed to join the
then. For me,
is an old-world love story about respect and sacrifice.
touched my heart,
Heaven On Earth
broke my heart.
Because Deepa Mehtra portrays you as a victim of domestic abuse?
Heaven On Earth
is not just about domestic abuse but about immigrants as well. I’ve always wondered how on one hand we worship our women as goddesses and on in the other use them as punching bags. My co-star (Vansh Bharadwaj) actually slapped me in front of the camera. It was a mistake, he took one extra step and went
The film fell into perspective. Till then I had been intellectualising. But when it actually happened to me, I knew exactly how a woman can feel helpless and humiliated. <b3>
Of course, as soon as Deepa shouted “Cut” I turned to Vansh and growled, “If you ever do that again, I’ll kill you.” It took me 20 minutes to get myself under control and three days for the bruise to fade.
You’ve never been hit before?
I was beaten up several times as a child. I was a real
, a tomboy. My mom gave me several tight slaps too. And once, when my friend got into a fight with her guy, I caught his hand and was pushed.
I hit my head. There was a bonfire going and I picked up a burning log to threaten him. My friends pulled me away and told me to behave like a chick. I got a big blister on my hand for my bravado.
Heaven On Earthis supposedly a blend of true-life stories and a play.
Yeah, and every scene is a story of some woman. I want women to see the film and know that they are not alone in their torment. I want men to see it and feel ashamed. I’ve had a wonderful father, brother and friends. But there are plenty of good-looking villains around. <b4>
Not too many people saw
The Last Lear. On the first Monday, a show at a Mumbai multiplex was cancelled for lack of takers.
The Last Lear
was in English and about Shakespeare. It was a niche film. Earlier, I would never have done a film like this because no one watches it. But Rituda (Rituparno Ghosh) told me it was just eight days’ work. And because of
The Last Lear
, I signed
Heaven On Earth
What happened to the bubbly NRI of
Kal Ho Na Ho?
Everyone said Preity looks rich.. she can’t be a
. Well, now they can see me as one. I’m proud to add my recent films to my DVD collection. But the bubbly NRI will be back.
is full on commercial. It’s not inspired, it has layers but I’m still the heroine.
Your comments on Shiney Ahuja have been veiled but not friendly?
In my career of 33 films, I’ve usually teamed up with my heroes more than once. So Shah Rukh, Aamir (Khan), Salman (Khan) and Akshay (Kumar) are like buddies. Since
was my first film with Shiney and a difficult one, I was not as open. We weren’t best friends but we were amiable co-stars.
Will you work with him again?
I work with directors, not actors.