Tejaswini Kolhapure chat

Updated on Sep 03, 2003 04:32 PM IST

An impressive debut in the much-delayed film, Paanch, is what best describes Tejaswini Kolhapure's entry into films. But could she have managed had she not been Padmini Kolhapure's kid sister? What was it like to star in a film which lay in cans for two years? Read transcript of a chat with her on August 27.

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HT Image

Rohit: How different is Paanch from a usual debut movie? How satisfied are you, being a part of Paanch?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: Paanch is very different in terms of shooting, characterisations and an ending.

laughingbuddha: Paanch lay in the cans for two years. Do you think it will be received well now?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: Yes, it will be because it is very different and the story line is excellent. It's a very exciting film. If the film is great, I don't think it makes a difference.

tanya: Mujhe Chand Chahiye was 'one of a kind' serial. Paanch seems to be one of its kind. Do you want to keep changing genres like this? Are you 'one of a kind' as well?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: I am 'one of a kind'... ha ha ha!

shilpa: To what extent does your style of acting resemble your sister's style?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: We are different as individuals. A person's characteristics come out while acting. We are different as chalk and cheese. Hence our acting styles are very different. Although people say we sound similar etc. that I guess doesn't change.

pyari101010: Hi, how are you doing? Can you tell me how do you define a good actress? Who is your favourite actor?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: A good actress/actor is someone who can do everything with utmost ease and looks convincing in what he or she is doing. I have loads of favourite actors with Naseeruddin Shah and Amitabh Bachchan heading the list.

laughingbuddha: You've been a sportsperson, I am told. Has it helped in this line?
Tejaswini Kohlapure: Not really! I am fit though. So I guess it has. I play a lot of sports so I don't have to learn them if I am required to do it on screen.

pyari101010: How tall are you?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: I am 5'7" & 1/2.

nupoor: In your real life, you are more like which of the two characters you have played- be it in Mujhe Chand Chahiye or Paanch?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: Bits of both.

niharrath75: What is the reason behind the delay of a movie like Paanch?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: First it was censors who created problems. Things had to be changed and now it's making the rounds of film festivals. It has just been screened at the Cinemaya film festival in New Delhi. First public screening, which happened there, was received well.

sadbad: Are you a foodie? Which is your favorite dish? You prefer veg or non-veg?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: Yes, I am a foodie. I love Thai and Konkani food.

kiran: Do you have any other movies right now?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: I am doing another film called Anjane. It's got Manisha Koirala and Sanjay Kapoor in it.

pyari101010: Can you dance well? What about singing?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: My father is a classical singer and so I guess it is in my veins. I sing a bit. I love music and dance. I have done few years of Bharatnatyam.

ronita: Don't you think your debut was pretty unconventional? How correct is it as a launch pad?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: It's very correct in terms of my role and everything. I have been appreciated and that is what matters. I didn't want to do the clichéd thing (running around trees). I think it's very perfect launch for me as it's an exciting film and I love exciting things.

pyari101010: What does Tejaswini really mean?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: It means lightening.

tuja: Where do you hang out in Mumbai?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: Olive, Rain, Athena, Fire - Gazali (for Konkani food). My mom makes great Konkani food. She's a great cook. I often go to Just Around The Corner, Contemporary Arts, Barista and Cafe Coffee Day. I love going to see movies. So you will find me at Fun Republic, Fame Adlabs, etc.

pyari101010: Hey, my favourite actor is Parash Rawal. How do you find him?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: Oh he's brilliant. I saw a play of his with Naseeruddin Shah. The kind of impact his performance had on me was stupendous. I was like WOW! Everyone goes to watch his hit movies. Hungama and Awara Paagal Deewana. He is so funny and so good in the films.

laughingbuddha: Your role in Paanch is a complete change of image from the traditional Hindi film heroines. In a manner too bold. Did you consciously choose to play a role like this to instantly get noticed?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: No, not at all. I am not a sensationalist. I want my work to speak. The reason was that it was different, unconventional and it was a challenge. I wanted to prove it to myself that I can do it.

I went through a lot to act the character, which is very different from me as a person. I took a lot of sittings with the director and my co-actors really helped as well. I didn't want to run away from the challenge just because it was so difficult. Everyone had heard of Anurag Kashyap and I wanted to do it. It was like a James Hadley Chase novel. I had done theatre and it was nice that I was going to work with all my friends.

The atmosphere was really good and completely relaxed. We had a great bonding with all of us. We had this theatre connection.

There was a bonding that kept on going with the difficulties (in terms of portraying the characters). Even KK's role was very difficult. He had an accident and had to get his head stitched. He went to hospital and came back and shot the scene. We had to shoot whole night.

We take a long time usually to get used to a person, but not for us. We used to shoot from 7 in evening till 7 in the morning. We had been octurnal creatures and we had to slog it out.

pyari101010: Do look out for planet Mars today in the sky.
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: Hahaha, no. I looked for Venus. That's my planet.

rajat_iit: Please help me enter film line didi! I will praise you till the end of my life.
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: Why don't you study? Why don't you do whatever you are doing now? There are insecurities in our profession. Have a steady job and that's good. Maybe you can look for something for me -).

laughingbuddha: Are you from Konkan?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: No I am from Mumbai. I am half a Konkani and half a Maharashtrian. My mother is a Konkani but I have been born and brought up here.

pyari101010: How do you rate Katrina Kaif, Lara Dutta and Priyanka Chopra? Do you think you have got a lot of competition?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: No I don't have competition. We are all different individually. There's a space for everybody. More the merrier. You work hard, as long as there's no bitterness involved. It's great. We are all from the same industry; we have all been models, so I guess it's even better.

john: If you get an opportunity to do the role of Cleopatra or Indira Gandhi or Princess Diana or Margaret Thatcher in a Hollywood project, which character you would like to portray? Reasons?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: Either Cleopatra or Princess Diana. They have been so glamourous and people like to watch pretty people. They had such exciting lives and just going through their lives would have been so exciting. I think politics is really boring so I won't like to do any of them.

kshitij: Do you want to work for commercial cinema or will prefer parallel cinema and offbeat movies?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: Both. I would like to do both. I'd like to balance them. We actually talk about parallel cinema and commercial films. For me it's more good films and bad films. I will do good films. What matters to be is the substance, my role, and of course, the money. At times money doesn't matter if you get a feeling of being associated with a good product. I will like to do that in terms of my films and career.

aashima: You being a newcomer how essential are it to have a godfather in this industry? Do you have any?
Tejaswini_Kohlapure: My Godfather is my brother-in-law. He has been supportive. Paanch is his film. I do take his advice in terms of what I should do. Ultimately, it's my decision. It's not that I follow him blindly. It's important that you know people in the industry who help you. You have to have right contacts and know the right kind of people. You can term one or two people as your mentors and one person as your Godfather.

As a child, I was in my own world - I just love to play. As I grew up I was an athelete, and grew up just like a normal teenager. Didn't know what to do. Deep down within, I wanted to be like my mom, who has been a good inspiration. My dad, being a classical singer used to do many performances. There's a huge gap between my sisters and me. I was like a mistake you could say. My mom had kind of quit at that time. Whatever I had heard about my mom, I wanted to be like her. I wanted to be financially independent. Whatever has happened in my life has just happened by chance. I was an athlete at one time; I got bored and didn't know what to do.

Destiny came knocking to me and I had a lot of offers. Being in a film family, people notice you being a siblings of actors/actresses. People notice you in parties etc. and want to take you on first. That's what happened to me. I got a lot of film offers. I didn't take them because I wasn't prepared mentally and physically. I got my pictures taken and became a model. That's how my interest grew in the entertainment industry. First a model, then a TV actress, and then theatre. So it's been a very confused journey. So now I am here and I am here to stay. I didn't have a goal in beginning and it developed over time.

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