Actresses usually prefer to keep their age a secret, but "Masaan" actress Shweta Tripathi, who looks younger than her 30 years, says being honest about one's age in the film industry, can have repercussions -- like when she lost out on a few projects.
Shweta Tripathi. Pic/ IANS
"I was born in 1985 and I don't want to lie about my age because I think that if you start lying about such basic things then... I mean where do you stop? Where do you draw the line? But you have to pay a price for being honest. I've lost out a few projects," Shweta told IANS.
"Directors have been like 'Oh Shweta, you are perfect for the role'. I give auditions and screen tests. They are convinced about my acting and I am almost on board. Then they ask me my age. I tell them my age and then they are like 'Oh, ok'. The next thing I know I am not doing this project," she added.
Shweta believes that people should be given roles on the basis of their performance.
"If I can't perform, then I will totally take it... but not because of my age," said the actress who essays a teenager's role in her next film "Haramkhor", which will see her share screen space with acting powerhouse Nawazuddin Siddiqui.
"I am convinced that I have done my homework and have done justice to the character," she shared.
Shweta is glad that she hasn't been type-cast post "Masaan", in which she played a Varanasi girl who falls in love with a man from a lower caste.
"I want to do roles that are dark and grey or 'nautanki' sorts. Thankfully, the scripts that I am getting right now, they are not close to Shalu (character in 'Masaan') and that is such a relief.
"I thought that I would be stuck with sweet, innocent and good girl roles. I don't want to play good girl roles only. I want to kill people on screen... That will be so much fun because that's something I won't do in real life," she said.
Item songs too are a big no-no for her.
"If the role is of a dancer, then it's different. I have no qualms about playing a character which might be different or a film which has dance or sensitive scenes. But just where I am supposed to wear skimpy clothes... that is something I wouldn't be able to do. Also, I wouldn't want my parents saying why I did it," said the actress, who was nervous when she had to tell her parents that she had a kissing scene in "Masaan".
What about doing TV?
Shweta featured in the Disney show "Kya Mast Hai Life" before making her film debut, but mainstream TV shows is not what she is looking at.
"When I was doing the TV show, a lot of people used to tell me to do mainstream TV shows. But somehow I knew that it is not something that I am interested in and eventually it had to lead to movies because I just love acting.
"I have my own theatre group called 'allmytea productions' and I also do ads. I like that because all the mediums are very different. So, as an actor I would like to explore everything," she said.
Also, if shows like "Game of Thrones" and "The Newsroom" are made in India, she would like to be a part of them.
"That is... something else. In fact, one of my favourite shows was 'Sarabhai vs Sarabhai'. If there is a show like that... that I am addicted to, then yes I will do it. Right now, I don't watch a single TV show. I don't watch TV at all.
"It got spoilt for the past two months and I didn't get it repaired because I don't watch TV," she said.
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