Star ratings for a blockbuster budget
on what money and a budget mean to her
Moneyislikeeverything else in life. Extremely significant, yet insignificant. We feel like we own it, but just like time and space, it moves. You have to be very stupid to hold on to money. Circulate it, enjoy it… do something with it. Money shouldn’t be lying dead somewhere, while you keep hoarding it. My mother used to say, ‘You’ll only get 100 for your sanitary pads.’ Well, that’s not pocket money. I have strict parents, but my great grandfather, Sarju Singh Ranaut, spoilt all of us kids rotten. He was a retired army man, freedom fighter and minister, so he got a lot of pension. He gave me 20-30 every day. For a Class 5 student, that was a lot of money. When I moved out and lived as a paying guest, I got 5,000. There were five of us living in a house and I paid 2,000 as rent.
I never saved any money. I had ex- penses like rickshaws, junk food, coffee, so I felt like I was always running out of cash. Before the month ended, I needed more money.
What seems irrelevant to my parents, isn’t to me. They think the money I spend on clothes is obscene. But I find their generation bizarre on many levels. They may have financial problems but they spend so much on weddings. They take loans to project a certain lifestyle. So to each his own and I’m not judgmental. We have to co-exist in our contradictions.
But I can’t tolerate a waste of r e s ou r c e s l i ke fo o d a nd wat e r. L e av i n g t he t ap on or throwing away a lot of food in the trash — that’s disheartening.
NOT EQUAL PAY
I’m underpaid. The male stars do four-five shifts and act like they’re working in a factory. They give six hours a day to a film, I give 18 hours. I give better results, but when you don’t get that appreciation, it’s disheartening.
It’s not easy to maintain the lifestyle of a top actress. The car they expect you to drive, the house you live in. I’m in show business and can’t live like a yogi. These are the expectations from an actress, but they underpay you and how can you afford that lifestyle? Now I can support myself, my family and fund my small dreams. I don’t have to do things that make me seriously unhappy like dance at weddings, do item songs or represent stupid brands like fairness creams.
INVESTING FOR THE FUTURE
I didn’t start out to be the highest paid actress with this huge house and flashy cars. I can do without all this. What’s important is that I’m the artiste that I am today. I do have a house and certain investments, but I’m not stocking up for the future or anxious about it. I’ve done it all myself without anybody’s help. I probably have one of the most fascinating rags-to-riches story you’ll come across. So it’s not frightening to start from scratch. I’m working on dreams, not saving up for them. I don’t dream of buying a jet. My farm, the TV room in my house – these are dreams, but I have the resources for them. — As told to Shradha. Sukumaran@ timesgroup.com
Kangana Ranaut says it’s not easy to maintain the lifestyle of a top actress, from the car that you drive to the house you live in