Joined: 24 December 2005
|Neena Gupta with daughter Masaba|
Award-winning roles lie with the helpless housewife
Neena Gupta says she wants to be the 'kamzor kudi'... for job's sake
I've been in show business for 20 years, yet I don't fit in – neither in the television nor in the film industry. Where have I gone wrong? Everyone tells me that I'm a natural actress, and I look okay.
So, why don't I get roles in those niche films of filmmakers like Rituparno Ghosh or Ram Gopal Verma, where actors of my age have so much to do?
People tell me that I have made many mistakes in my career. Yes, Aparna Sen did approach me with a role in her film once. I didn't like the role, so I refused it. Was it a big mistake?
Apparently it was, for Aparna almost took my refusal as a personal insult. She was so upset that she has never worked with me again. Today, I wonder whether we actors need to take on roles we don't like, just to be assured of roles in future? Is that the way this game should be played?
Mahesh Bhatt is a friend of mine, he acknowledges that I'm a good actress. But when it comes to work, he wants me to do a song in his film. An item song. Why should I?
I did get a role in an important film with a big director whom I really wanted to work with, recently. The director was fond of me, I openly expressed my admiration for him. Was that a mistake? Evidently it was, for the director's wife thought I wanted to have an affair with her husband, and demanded that he throw me out of the film. He did. I lost out on yet another chance.
When I first came to Mumbai, I thought my biggest strength was that I could look and act different, for different roles. Today I realise that it was my biggest weakness. For, now I know that I don't have work only because I am not fitted neatly into a slot. Filmmakers know that if they need a certain kind of mother, they should call Reema Lagoo, if they need another kind of mother, they should call Kirron Kher. But no one knows when they should call me. I tried to play different types of roles. I wish I hadn't.
Just like sometimes I wish today that I could leave this industry forever.
At one point, my friends told me that my PR was awry, that's why I didn't get roles. I rectified that. I called up filmmakers to ask for roles. I pretended that I had come to Mumbai anew and had to make a fresh start.
I called up Yash Chopra. He told me, "Sure, I know you're a good actress. You don't have to call me. I'll call you whenever I have something for you." That's the irony. Everyone knows I am a good actress. Only, they don't have roles for me.
I messaged Ekta Kapoor, expressing my desire to work with Balaji. Ekta replied that the pleasure was entirely hers. She did get back with a role. But I didn't like it, so I refused. Now, was that a mistake? Perhaps.
The irony is that after every success, I thought I had made it. After Khandaan, I was confident. But just because in Khandaan I didn't want kids and was an astute businesswoman, I didn't get the role of a heroine on television afterwards.
After Saans too, I thought I had made it, for here I played the quintessential bechara housewife, the kind most television roles are made of. But I made the mistake of following it up with Kamzor Kadi Kaun, where I was a battleaxe. So no one gave me bechara roles.
The media loved to sell me as a strong, single woman, I enjoyed being sold as a strong, single woman. Now I don't. Now I know that it works best to have a helpless image for television. For that's where all the award-winning roles lie.
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Achcha,we can also say..mehnat ka fal meetha hota hai .Viv ji kya kehna..neena ke saath cricket khela kya....no offence..was just joking
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