Celebrity Interview: Priyanka Chopra

By Subhash K. Jha, Indo-Asian News ServiceimageMumbai, (IANS) Though she is being offered plum assignments, Priyanka Chopra chose to play what she describes as a relatively small role in “Bluffmaster” and doesn’t regret her decision.

“See, Abhishek (Bachchan) plays the title role. I knew exactly what I had to do. And I thoroughly enjoyed myself. I’m only doing the films I know I’ll be proud of. And ‘Bluffmaster’ is certainly one such film,” Priyanka told IANS.

“Being a female actor it’s unlikely for me to play the title role in ‘Bluffmaster’ or ‘Don’. But I was the only girl on the sets. I play Abhishek’s love interest. But Abhishek and Riteish (Deshmukh) make a pair. They’re fantastic. Their chemistry together is unbelievable.”

The film by director Rohan Sippy was released Friday.

“Abhishek is a fantastic actor. He knows exactly what to do and how the film will turn out. When he was acting I realised how intelligent he is as an actor.”

She’s also doing a film with Hrithik Roshan. “Abhishek and Hrithik are very different but very, very good actors. But Duggu (Hrithik) is also a spontaneous actor. Both of them are very focused on their roles.”

She chuckles at the memory of the pranks shared with Abhishek.

“One day we decided we’ll take Rohan’s trip. We decided to pull a prank regarding Nana Patekar whom we were all scared of. I used to arrive half an hour before him and wait for him. No pranks when he was around. But one day Abhishek and I decided to make up this story and complain that Nana had misbehaved with me.

“I went hysterically hammy. Rohan was ready to speak to Nana when we all burst out laughing… Nana has such an aura of being private and inaccessible. But he’s a warm soul. He used to bring food for all of us.”

As for her director, Priyanka speaks from the heart.

“He made it with his heart. I came out of ‘Bluffmaster’ with great memories, great friends… All my friends are from the films I work in. Otherwise, I’ve no one to go out with. Come on, hook me up with someone.”

“Of all the films I’ve done so far, this one has been the most fun to make. ‘Bluffmaster’ is one of a kind. While everything was completely organised, all of us, Rohan, Riteish, Abhishek and I, were completely mad on the sets. This wasn’t an easy film to make. This kind of a film hasn’t been made in Hindi before,” she adds.

It’s been a tough year for Priyanka.

“My father fell ill. Now he’s in America recovering. He’s out of the hospital. But he has to get himself checked once a week. The doctors say he’ll be ready to return in January. He’s been in hospital for six months. It’s been a traumatic time. I think I’ve matured quite a lot.

“Professionally, it was quite a tumultuous year. ‘Waqt’ did really well… ‘Barsaat’ too did well. Now I hope to pull a hat trick with ‘Bluffmaster’.”

She seems upbeat about her future projects.

“God’s been very kind to my career. Good things happened after ‘Aitraaz’… Now I’ve Rakesh Roshan’s ‘Krrish’ and Rumi Jaffrey’s ‘God Tussi Great Ho’ which are complete, Farhan Akhtar’s ‘Don’ which I start shooting in January, Dharmesh Darshan’s ‘Aap Ki Khatir’ and Nikhil Advani’s ‘Salaam-e-Ishq’ where I pair with Akshaye Khanna for the first time…All these films will be over by July 2006.”

Is Priyanka happy inching towards the top slot?

“It’s such a slippery place to be in, dude. Mr. (Amitabh) Bachchan, Shah Rukh (Khan), Madhuri (Dixit), Kajol, Aishwarya (Rai)…they’ve been there for years. But look at them. They’re incredible actors. I’m happy being recognised as versatile. I just want to let things flow. I’ve been here for a very short span of time.”

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