There’s fear of being forgotten by the film industry, says Diana Penty
Diana Penty says it is a constant battle for her between giving into the temptation of doing more movies to stay visible or signing projects she genuinely believes in. Diana, who has done four films in her eight-year-old career, began her stint in Bollywood in 2010 with Cocktail, which was commercially successful.
After a gap of nearly four years, she went on to star in Anand L Rai’s hit romantic-comedy Happy Bhaag Jayegi. Looking at her Bollywood journey so far, Diana says the four-year gap between her first two films made her feel that the industry had forgotten her.
Asked if she ever had the fear of being forgotten, the actor said, “I think it actually happened with me - the time that I took between Cocktail and Happy Bhaag Jayegi, a lot of people told me, ‘out of sight is out of mind’, and I was like ‘Okay, maybe’. And it did happen. Because I wasn’t around, people just assumed I was doing other things and was not interested in films which I thought was unfair. But at the same time, you realise, that’s how it works, it’s human nature. And it is true, there is this fear.”
Diana admits that there are times when she is concerned about the slow pace of her career, but, thankfully, her intention towards choosing a project always takes over. “Sometimes you wake up with mini panic attacks where you feel like ‘Oh my God! I don’t have a film right now! Should I just do something that comes my way because I don’t have another film’? But I feel at the end of the day, your gut takes over. I have never been able to go against my instinct.”
Watch: Parmanu The Story Of Pokhran movie review
Along with this conflict, there are also moments when Diana feels she should make active attempts to be seen more so that she still seems relevant to people that matter. But, she says, her idea of visibility is different from those actors who make more news with their “airport appearances” than through the movies they do. “If you are a complete hermit, sometimes it is difficult for people to (remember you). It’s very natural for, maybe, a filmmaker to not think of you because you are not in the radar. You are not seen, you are not in the paper, you are not seen online. So they tend to forget about you. But I don’t think you need to bombard yourself and suddenly be everywhere at the same time either.”
Diana says it is about the balance and what is more important is the visibility through one’s films. “That’s quality visibility, because someone, who watches your film and enjoys your performance, will think of you. The impact that you can leave on the other person through your films holds way more weight than just being seen at a party or any other appearance, or being seen at a freaking airport.”
The actor is currently seen in Parmanu- The Story of Pokhran, based on the nuclear bomb test explosions conducted by the Indian Army at Pokhran in 1998. Diana found the film, featuring John Abraham in the lead, extremely engaging at the script level and believed it would be a great story to be brought on screen. “When I began reading the script, I felt it was very well written. I was flipping through pages because I wanted to know what happens next. So, the film was the perfect thriller. It kept me on the edge of my seat even at the script level. That’s rare because most of the scripts you read, some way or the other, you think, ‘Oh! I wish this or that could have been there in the story’. But here, I felt the script was so tight. I think it was the best script written in this genre.”