Deepika Padukone on 9 years of Cocktail: It changed a lot for me professionally, impacted me personally
A film that reintroduced Deepika Padukone to her fans in an all new way was Cocktail (2012). As the uninhibited and emotionally raw Veronica, with the film, the actor moved away from her girl-next-door roles and stepped into a territory which is considered one of the best performances by her.
As the film clocks nine years today, Padukone remembers the role that is very close to her heart.
“I’ve always believed that while you put a little part of yourself in every character you play, you also carry a part of that character with you forever. And therefore, Veronica will always be one of the most special characters I’ve played on screen; one that changed a lot for me professionally and impacted me personally,” she tells us in an exclusive chat.
So does she attribute Veronica as a breakthrough and a turning point for her career in Bollywood, which started with 2007 film Om Shanti Om?
“Yes. I would like to believe so! If a character turned out to be so successful and resonated with millions, then obviously there was something about that character that the audiences empathised with,” she adds.
The film, directed by Homi Adajania and written by Imtiaz Ali, also starred Saif Ali Khan and Diana Penty, besides Padukone. Reminiscing her process of prepping for the role, the 35-year-old shares that Veronica’s personality is not one that she was familiar with at that stage in her life.
“Therefore when I was given the script to read I assumed it was for Meera’s character (which was played by Penty). It was Iimtiaz Ali who called me up one day and requested me to re-read the script for Veronica. A couple of days later and after giving it some thought, I understood what he meant and saw what he saw.And while I had butterflies in my tummy, I also knew that I was ready for it,” Padukone says.
But having said that, she is quick to add, “I don’t think I would have been able to what I did if it wasn’t for Homi Adajania. He gave me wings to fly and made me believe I could do no wrong. And with that belief, we were able to create a character that will live in our hearts forever.”