‘I WAS TOLD TO DYE MY HAIR BLACK’

Ac­tor Kalki Koech­lin says how far she has come in Bol­ly­wood in eight years

Hindustan Times (Patna) - Live - - Front Page - An­juri Na­yar Singh an­juri.na­yar@htlive.com ■

It would be dif­fi­cult for me to play a ru­ral, gaon-wali ladki, [though] play­ing a desi char­ac­ter is nor­mal for me now KALKI KOECH­LIN, AC­TOR

Ac­tor Kalki Koech­lin has al­ways been some­one con­sid­ered to be an out­sider in Bol­ly­wood. And this after eight years in the in­dus­try, fol­low­ing a high­oc­tane 2009 de­but in Dev D, and roles in main­stream films, in­clud­ing Zindagi Na Mi­legi Do­bara (2011) and Yeh Jawaani Hai Dee­wani (2013).

While many peo­ple have now ac­cepted that she is “In­dian enough”, it has been a long jour­ney, says the 33-yearold, born to French par­ents in Pondicherry.

Talk­ing about the ad­vice she got when she en­tered Bol­ly­wood, Kalki says that although some of it was use­ful, the rest she chose to ig­nore. “I re­mem­ber one woman telling me to dye my hair [black] and do an item num­ber. But I didn’t re­ally pay at­ten­tion. Other than that, it has been sen­si­ble things that I’ve been told, like im­prov­ing my Hindi. My danc­ing skills are also ter­ri­ble and I worked on that,” she says.

Kalki, who will be seen next in ac­tor Konkona Sen Sharma’s de­but di­rec­to­rial ven­ture, says that it’s still tough for her to es­say some roles. “It would be dif­fi­cult for me to play a ru­ral, gaon-wali ladki,” she says, even though “play­ing a desi char­ac­ter is nor­mal for me now”.

On the whole, she has crossed the bar­rier of her looks. “Most peo­ple have ac­cepted the fact that I’ve been here and that I am In­dian. I don’t think the phys­i­cal­ity of it gets in the way,” says Kalki. “Of course, there are cer­tain roles that wouldn’t be cred­i­ble for me to play,” adds the ac­tor.

Talk­ing about the kind of roles she wants, Kalki says, “I want to do every­thing. I am greedy. I love in­de­pen­dent dra­mas. At the same time, I love Cat Woman and Won­der Woman, too. It’s im­por­tant to be ver­sa­tile. I don’t think I am con­sciously look­ing to do some­thing dif­fer­ent. But... I like to play some­one unique.”

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