Welcome to Tollywood

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

I want to do fun cinema says Kartina Kaif

She walked into a packed room, surrounded by photographers on all sides. It took a while before those assembled could catch a glimpse of her.

Model-turned-actor Katrina Kaif was in Mangalore to inaugurate a jewellery showroom.

Quite predictably, the media hounded the actor, dressed in a bright sari and decked in gold jewellery.

Patiently, the pretty Ms. Kaif, answered the series of questions thrown at her.

Prepared perhaps to field posers on her career, she was thrown a little off balance by the first question: “Would you vote for Abdul Kalam or Pratibha Patil if you had a chance to vote in the presidential election?”

“Pratibha…I think. But I respect Mr. Kalam. He has done a lot for the country. I don’t know… I am not a political expert,” she tried, grinned, and gave up with a wave of her hands.

The tension was dissipated, everyone relaxed and simpler questions followed.

Comparing the careers of modelling and acting, she said acting was tougher. It demanded more, she said.

For Katrina, her best role in Bollywood so far, has been in “Namastey London”.

“The story revolves around a woman, which is quite rare in commercial Hindi cinema.”

Katrina said she loved working in the South Indian film industry. She has worked in Telugu and Malyalam movies. “It has been two and a half years since I did a South Indian movie. I miss the industry,” she said.

She was offered a Kannada movie once, but couldn’t accept it, as she was busy with four other projects at the same time. If a good Kannada offer comes along, I will definitely take it. But I hope the language is easier than Malayalam, which was quite complicated,” she says smiling.

Second language

“I am willing to work in any language if the director is talented. Language is secondary,” she added.

Asked about her sartorial preferences, she said it depended on the situation.

“If I am wearing jewellery like this (pointing to the many gold necklaces she was wearing), then it has obviously got to be a sari.

If I am going out for coffee, or somewhere more casual, I would prefer a dress.”

She answered the expected “who is the best actor you have worked with?” with a careful, “I share a very good working relationship with Akshay Kumar. He has very good energy, and we are comfortable with each other.”

Anish Asmi’s “Welcome”, a musical with Subhash Ghai and a movie with Abbas Mastan, co-starring Saif Ali Khan, are projects she is looking forward to.

Asked what she thought of the nature of roles Bollywood offered its actresses, she thought for a moment before saying “In commercial cinema, the roles offered to heroines tend to be limited, but there are off beat roles that allow you to explore a character. However, initial success and recognition come through commercial films.

At the beginning of any career you want to be noticed. “Like everyone else, even I want to be taken note of,” said Katrina.

“Every actress thinks differently, but for me, it is more important to be an entertainer. I am consciously building my career as a commercial actress.

At a later stage, I might do offbeat roles. But now I don’t want to do films that ten people watch. I want to do movies where the hall is full.

I want to do ‘fun cinema’. Eventually of course, I want to try other kinds of roles too,” said Katrina.

Her dream role, she said would be a in a period film. “I would love to do a movie set in times of war or conflict,” Katrina said signing off.



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