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'John and I are under no pressure to get married'

Bipasha Basu on resuming the shooting for Lamha, her equation with co-stars and marriage plans with John Abraham in an interview with Hiren Kotwani.

entertainment Updated: Jan 12, 2009 13:05 IST
Hirn Kotwani
Hirn Kotwani
Hindustan Times

Bipasha Basu exchanges news-‘n’-views with Hiren Kotwani.

Long time, no see.. where have you vanished?
I haven’t spoken to the media because there wasn’t much to talk about. Throughout December, I shot for Rahul Dholakia’s Lamha in Film City.

Before that, I completed Aa Dekhen Zara with Neil Nitin Mukesh. Since August, I’ve also been busy overseeing the renovation work at my house. It’s driving me mad.. it should be ready by May, so I’ll shift in June.<b1>

2008 had begun on a good note for you.. with Race and Bachna Ae Haseeno. But after that, it was all quiet.
Well, a couple of more releases like Pankh and (the Bengali film) Shobo Charitro Kalponik were also due. But they’re both different kind of films and need to first make the film festival rounds. You’ll have to ask Sanjay Gupta (the producer) about Pankh and also let me know about it.

As for Shobo Charitro Kalponik, there’s a dubbing issue. The producers want to retain my voice for only one print.. for the National Awards. But I’d really like my voice to be retained in all the prints. Otherwise, the audience will immediately make out that it’s dubbed. Even director Rituparno Ghosh supports me on this.

Why haven’t you been signing more movies?

Since quite a while, I’ve been doing only about three films a year. I don’t want to do more just for the heck of it. I want to enjoy my work and feel proud of my performances at the end of the day.

And there’s no point in doing something I’ve already done before. I’m in talks for a couple of projects which I should be able to confirm in a month or two.

After eight years in show biz, was it necessary to do a test photo-shoot for



That was a look test.. which I do at the beginning of every film. Yash Raj Films and most producers and directors insist on a look test to get the make-up, hairstyle and outfits right before rolling.. instead of wasting time when the shoot is on.

But the first schedule of


was anything but pleasant. Reportedly, a security staffer tried to get extra-friendly and you returned to Bombay.

Kashmir is a fabulous place, it’s beautiful and the food is great. But there would be such a huge crowd at the locations that it became impossible to get any work done. I returned after a week when no work was getting done. If we could have shot, then I would have certainly stayed on.<b2>

Talk is that you had issues with producer Bunty Walia. It seems that you told him that one needs to be a woman to understand what you went through. Even Sanjay Dutt was said to be upset to learn that you were on your way back when he reached Srinagar.

If you can’t get any work done at an outdoor shoot, you can’t stay on there indefinitely. I was the only woman there. I discussed the situation with Rahul Dholakia and Bunty before returning home. Sanjay also understood my viewpoint.

And now, I’m just leaving for Srinagar to shoot for the next 10 days.

Have you asked for more security?

Security and other issues have been sorted with the state authorities. Yes, Jammu and Kashmir is a sensitive state, but the people and the government want things to change.. they want tourists to come there. The high percentage of voting during the recent elections confirms that things are under control. The fact that I’ve returned to shoot in Srinagar is also proof of this.

Okay, to move on.. it seems now that Neil Nitin Mukesh has sung the title song of

Aa Dekhen Zara

, he wants you to sing too for the track.

Yes, Neil is keen that I participate in the song, though it’s not actually singing.

In fact, I just have to speak lines which are like dialogue. This has to be done in sync sound. Right now, I’m not sure if I will. I’m not too keen but then, I just might.. let’s see.

Have you really patched up with Kareena Kapoor who once gave you a tough time during



Kareena and I aren’t the same persons we were back then.. we have matured. So the way we think and behave is not at all like the



But your cold war with Katrina Kaif continues..

Oof, we’re not exactly the best of friends..

Seems your boyfriend John Abraham too didn’t interact with her while shooting New York.. beyond work.

I can’t speak for my boyfriend. You’ll have to ask John that question.

What’s your take on John Abraham’s


with Abhishek Bachchan?

I just loved their act. I’ve seen


five times and enjoyed it every time.

With his bare body in


, John Abraham has become eye candy No 1 for women, hasn’t he?

He has worked hard to build a great body and continues working just as hard to maintain it. He bared it even in his first film



But the manner in which he tugged his trunks drew a lot of attention. When asked about it in an interview, Priyanka Chopra said that she was competing with a man now.

(Smiles) The more you report about something, the more attention it draws.

Last year, at the time of your birthday, there was a strong buzz that John and you were about to be engaged.

Thankfully there have been no such rumours this time. Ha ha. But you never know.. apart from our engagement, during our six-year relationship we’ve heard about our break-up, patch-up, marriage plans.. the works. Anyway,

chalta hai..

So when is marriage on the cards? Or is a personal commitment harmful for an actress’ career?

Marriage will happen when it has to.. at the right time. We are under no pressure to get engaged or married.. neither from my parents’ side nor from his parents. We’re together and that is important. And I don’t think a commitment comes in the way of an actress’ career.

In any case, there’s no dearth of roles even after marriage. Like Madhuri Dixit and Kajol who have continued to act even after motherhood.