Says Tamannah Bhatia who makes her Bollywood debut in 'Himmatwala' opposite Ajay Devgn
It has been a busy day for Tamannah Bhatia as she promotes her upcoming film. As she takes a break and he runs to vanity van for a quick touch-up, we tag along for an interview. For an actress who is making her Bollywood debut, Tamannah is confident. But this air of self-assurance comes from years of working around the industry mechanisms. The actress who is making her Bollywood debut opposite Ajay Devgn in Sajid Khan's 'Himmatwala' is a known face in the South. She made her acting debut in 'Chand Sa Roshan Chehra' in 2005 before flying down South and working in Tamil and Telugu films. As her hair gets styled, Tamannah chats with us about 'Himmatwala'. Here's the excerpts
From Mumbai to South Indian films; how did that happen?
I was in school and started my career with a Hindi film and post that south Indian offers started pouring in and the age that I was in, I was open to exploring new opportunities. At that time, I didn’t even have a portfolio and I had movie after movie coming in. I knew I wanted to be an actress and I was lucky enough that my parents supported me. I continued studies and south films till I got very busy. I was in school and the producer of the film wanted to cast and my school teacher recommended my name. I auditioned for it and got the role.
Ajay Devgn unplugged
You have worked in both the industries. How are they different?
The similarity is that the film making process is the same- the expectation, money etc. The way both the industries function is the same. The difference is in the culture. North India and South India has different culture and that is what is reflected in the films. When I was working with Sajid, he was very punctual and systematic. A lot of homework and research went into it since the film was based in the 80s. The looks, the costume, everything had to be taken care of.
Comparisons between you and Sridevi have started even before the film’s release. Do you feel the pressure?
Although the film is a remake, Sajid has completely rewritten the film. So when you will watch the film, there won’t be any sense of comparison because things have been changed quite a bit. There will be only one Sridevi and I am a new actor. I know audience will compare but I hope they accept me too.
Sajid gets candid
What were the challenges involved in playing a role based in the 80s?
Honestly, I didn’t go through any preparation. I came with a plain slate and followed the instructions that were given to me by Sajid. Also, he had grown-up on the movies of the eighties. He has guided me so finely that it made my job very easy. I always leave it to the director because every film has a different requirement and your approach to it has to be different. For me, there will always be, in every shot, a point when you will feel you need to cross this. So a lot of practical issues come up and you have to cross mental barricades as well. My first scene was with Mahesh Manjerekar and it was a comedy scene. Sajid has a brilliant comic timing and the scene went out pretty well.
What has been your learnings in the industry?
I had started every young and have grown up in the industry through I am not actually from the industry. Everything I have learnt about life is from the industry.