I’m

Cosmopolitan (India) - - FASHION -

m al­ways happy to in­ter­view Nneha Dhu­pia be­cause it ffeels less like work, and more lilike be­ing paid to kick­back with good com­pany. She is sharp, un­nerv­ingly lu­cid and full of good hu­mour. So just what is the source of all her pow­ers?

“As I get older, be­ing happy and con­tent is my am­bi­tion,” she says. “Ev­ery­thing I do comes from that one decision.” And the sea-change the new at­ti­tude has brought is plain to see. Where once it was im­por­tant just to be in the run­ning even if it meant hitch­ing her­self to dodgy films she didn’t be­lieve in, now “what feels in­stinc­tively right” has taken prece­dence. “It’s sim­ple—if I’m go­ing to work, I should not have to force my­self out of bed.”

Neha is slowly ratch­et­ing up a mod­est but mean­ing­ful body of work. With mem­o­rable char­ac­ters like the salty-tongued Munni Gang­ster from Phas­gay­ere­obama, to Hitler’s paramour, Eva Braun, in Gandhi to Hitler, and cur­rently a stylish news chan­nel hon­cho who is ‘like Betty Draper meets Sharon Stone’ in her up­com­ing film, Rush, she is es­tab­lish­ing her­self as a de­pend­able ac­tor al­ways game for try­ing new things. With sig­na­ture can­dour, she adds, “And some­times the work speaks vol­umes for my abil­ity, and some­times it stays silent. I’ve just got to fo­cus on do­ing what in­trigues me.”

Her need to stay ex­cited and keep things fun re­flects squarely in her sar­to­rial choices. Polka dots, colour blocks, ki­monos, sheers, pussy bows, struc­tured sheaths and all things straight-up an­drog­y­nous—you name it, and she’s rocked it. “I de­test ‘same old’,” she says. “Any­thing that’s not run-of-the-mill, I’ll try.” But shoes are her one true love, she wants to make very clear. “Shoes over clothes any day. I de­cide my shoes be­fore I de­cide my clothes,” she laughs.

While she’s scal­ing Best Dressed Lists and be­ing lauded for her keen style and im­pec­ca­ble taste, the for­mer

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