From playing a 60-year-old in Saand Ki Aankh to doing stand-up comedy in One Mic Stand, Taapsee Pannu tried several new things in 2019. “2019, in a nutshell, was validating. It has been the best year actually. Trust of the director, audience and producers increases in an actor when things go all good,” she said while looking back at the year gone by.
In an exclusive chat, Taapsee also talked about being controversy’s favourite child and how she looks forward to 2020.
Here are excerpts from the conversation:
How has 2019 been for you?
Some films work more but eventually all of them are good enough to be loved by critics and the audience alike. So that was quite a validation of sorts this year. Then you feel like the next year you can push the envelope further. 2020 will be even more harder than 2019. Slow and steady, but yeah the steadiness is very good for me.
Do you think with films like Saand Ki Aankh, and the stand-up comedy debut, you took enough risks this year?
I keep taking risks with most of my films. If you know everything is cool and safe, then there is no thrill. Then it becomes like a regular day job. So, that way, I keep the excitement high in my job. Stand-up comedy and all happen on the side, just for the fun sake. Movies is what I enjoy. So, that is seen in a different way than everything else that I do on the side for my own entertainment.
Has 2019 changed you in any way?
It did show me a lot of ups and downs in terms of how people in the industry and the audience look at a certain project. And since all my films, characters and genres were so different, I worked with different people in all of them. So this really helped me to know about things that go behind filmmaking like pre-production, post-production, marketing and all.
You were dragged into several controversies in 2019. After Rangoli Chandel’s comments against you, there was an ageism debate around your Saand Ki Aankh too.
I became more and more indifferent because it matters so little in the larger scheme of things. I have realised no matter whatever you say, it will be interpreted by people according to their convenience. For instance, when I asked for a credit for a female actor in a film as much as a male actor, the headlines of a lot of portals read that I said (Amitabh) Bachchan sir’s credit was undue (in Badla). Now when did I say that? So I think like how they are indifferent to us in terms of quoting us, I have become indifferent to them. My immunity has increased much more.
What are your hopes for 2020?
Even more diversity! The thing is when you are coming on the big screen after every three or four months, then you better bring something new or else the audience is gonna get bored of you. So I am making sure that I give them enough variety.
Why don’t we see you in the digital space yet?
I have been offered a lot of web shows, but I have not been doing it because I really want to do a web show when I get something very different from my films. Otherwise, what’s the point of doing web.
Is there any wish list of directors or actors for the coming months?
So many! It’s a big industry. And I always end up working with same directors, and they have been repeating me. That means I have a good report card. I will try to work possibly with some new ones too. I will probably do six films in a year, but I will not let a good script go (laughs). I love collaborating with good actresses. It’s a treat to do that. So I would really like to do that too.
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