A few local people living around the row bungalows near Versova were curious to know about the media activity going on in their area. “Woh Queen aayi hain wahan pe,” a little kid told his cricket team mate, while pointing towards the last bungalow, which happened to be the office of Phantom Films, where Kangana Ranaut was busy giving interviews. Surrounded by life size posters of her recently released film, the actress, dressed in an off-white spaghetti-strap dress and a pair of nude pumps, settles down with her coffee tumbler for a freewheeling chat with Screen. She makes some candid confessions and talks about her love for women oriented films, exploring new avenues and more.
Looking at the way the character of Rani has shaped up, many believe that you have personally contributed a lot to her personality and nuances. Is that true?
I was involved with this project since the early stages. When Vikas (Bahl) first met me, there was no hardbound script. It was just an idea and when I heard it, I was a bit hesitant because his idea of Rani was not that of a quintessential heroine. If you see the film, you will notice that she can easily become lost in a large group, can be passed off like a typical behenji and be bullied for that. I took time to relate to her, because I have always been a very popular kid in school. Rani doesn’t wear proper clothes, whereas I am a style icon. There are scenes where she praises her own sense of humour, but the fact remains that she doesn’t have one. This is the last role that you will want to offer Kangana Ranaut, who had just played a superwoman in Krrish 3. But I took it up as a challenge and in order to understand Rani, I had to get into the skin of the character to know her. In real life, I am not like her, so I am glad that I got the chance to be a part of the film since its inception.
Do you think an actor’s involvement helps in structuring the role?
Involvement always helps, because when we went through the process of costume trials, look tests, giving the finishing touches to the story and dialogues among other things, it helped me to give Rani a particular structure. There are details within her mannerisms that stand out. She flutters her eyelids when she spots people kissing randomly on the road, she won’t part with her bag very easily or the manner in which she puts her cardigan back into her bag, after trying to ape a strip tease performer in a bar. Back in my hometown, I had seen many girls who behaved like that, so it helped.
You recently stated that Queen is one of your best performance till date and many critics agree with that fact. Are …continued »