How excited are you as an actor about Acid Factory?
I should say that though I am quite excited about the fact that Acid Factory will take me to the next level as an actor, I am not nervous at all. I remember when I heard the script of Lage Raho Munnabhai when Rajkumar Hirani narrated it to me; I told him I could not wait till I saw the complete film. This time also when Suparn Verma narrated the subject to me, I told him that it was a brilliant plot and hence I could not wait to see the film. You see you can visualize a film when you hear the narration for the first time. I call it magic.
What is your role in Acid Factory?
I play a girl called Max in Acid Factory. My role is not one of those parts which expect the actor to give an outstanding performance, because you have to look the part in the plot driven film. I had to work hard on my physical appearance. The toughest aspect of my role in Acid Factory was that I had to look like I can easily take on the boys every day when I stood alongside them on location.
Can you explain?
To work as an actor is an integral part of our craft. Besides doing extra physical training program with Rakesh Udayar, believe it or not, I had to actually spend three hours every day in the morning from 5 am to 8 am at Tinnu Verma"s farm and then hit the gym for about two hours, head back home for rest and then again hit the gym in the evening once again for yet another two hours.
Is it true that you were not the first choice for the role of Max?
Yes. I was actually not Sanjay Gupta"s first choice because the film industry has this tendency to type-cast actresses in different slots. There are some actresses who only like to play themselves, whereas there are some like me who want to re-invent themselves by pushing the envelope and in the process their own set limits.
Is it true that you had even agreed to do a screen test to get the role?
Yes. When Suparn told me that he was toying with the idea of casting me in his film, I told him that I was even ready to do the screen test. I think destiny was on my side. I even did a photo shoot before I got the role. I liked the role because it challenged me. Also it was wonderful to be the centre of attraction, since I am like a man in the film, though all the boys treated me like a girl and were possessive about me.
How did you prepare for the part?
I made it a point to watch a lot of action films of 70"s, 80"s to get the feel of my role as Max in Acid Factory. The femme fatale in all those films was really feminine, yet strong. I wanted to play a similar type of role in Acid Factory. I did not watch any Angelina Jolie film as part of my exercise, because that was the brief which Suparn gave me.
Are you happy with the way your career has shaped till date?
I am extremely satisfied with the way my career has shaped up over the years. At a stage three years ago, I would have said that I was not happy when I analyze about my growth in the industry. I came into the industry nine years ago with nothing but the title Miss Asia Pacific. I am today respected in all those circles which I respect and I am in a position where I can help people. If it is only your talent that guarantees you super stardom and success, then Irrfan Khan who has been teamed opposite me in Acid Factory would have been a super star by now in the industry, by virtue of his talent. If you have the requisite talent, it will however certainly help you go the distance.
Which are the films you have up your sleeves now?
I am having a couple of films like Sanjay Gupta"s Alibag, Arshad Warsi"s maiden production venture Kaun Bola and Johny Mastana.
What has your experience of nine years in this industry taught you?
I have learnt a lot in life by falling down. When you have absolutely no guidance whatsoever in life, you will learn a lot. I recently read a book that stated that experience is what you get when you do not get what you want and it is something better than what you wanted in the first place. Though it did not do well because Vashu Bhagnani did not give enough time for its promotion at the time of its release, my first film Rehna Hai Tere Dil Mein is my most memorable film till date. If it had been a super hit, my entire career would have charted an entirely different course by now, but then on the flip side, I feel that when the tide is high, it also crashes down equally fast.
Diya Mirza tells that Rehna Hai Tere Dil Mein did not do well because Vashu Bhagnani did not promote it properly.