Dressed in a bright orange jumpsuit, the matter-of-factness in her voice is undeniable. Deepika Padukone comes across as someone who has figured out everything. Thrilled about Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, her second release of the year after Race 2, the 27-year-old says she listens to her heart more often than not. Excerpts of the interview:
How is Ranbir Kapoor as a co-star?
I think this is our first film together because Bachna Ae Haseeno didn’t do justice to us as an onscreen couple. Besides, we were dating then so the film just came and went. During the shooting of our upcoming film, I finally discovered Ranbir as a very supportive co-star. He’s very patient and won’t be annoyed even if I’m taking more time to get the shot right. A lot of this has to do with our comfort level, our history and the understanding we share.
And what equation do you share with him off the sets?
We both started off as actors in 2007 so this journey from being strangers to being friends is what I cherish today. I take a lot of pride in his success. It’s great to see his films do well and career graph soar.
As an actress, do you take criticism seriously?
Criticism can help you grow as it shows what you lack although it can’t tell you how to overcome your shortcomings. You’ll have to do that on your own. Also, sometimes the critique can vary from person to person so I have to decide whether to let that negativity affect me or not.
Are you better equipped now to deal with being always in the limelight?
I’d be lying if I told you that it doesn’t bother me at all. Having said that, I’ve grown wiser with time. Earlier, if I scored a 10 reacting to rumours on a scale of 1-10, today I score like a 2 or 3. In any case, all the speculations are temporary because when your film releases, what matters is it has to be great.
You even adopted a village in Maharashtra?
Yes, it’s still my responsibility and I make sure I contribute funds to ensure electricity in Ambegaon. The idea is to educate kids and spread light in interiors of our country. Ironically, my name along with my family members’ - father (Prakash), mom (Ujwala) and sister (Anisha) - means light too!
So how does your family react to your work?
They watch all my films. Among my parents, my mom is more objective about my work. She’ll always point out something to improve on. As far as the choice of films is concerned, I’m responsible for my decisions and nobody else.