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Payal upbeat about her big projects

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By Reshma Kelkar, IndiaFM
Friday, July 27, 2007
Nobody from Bollywood would ideally say no to an offer from Yash Raj Films. Especially if it's small time actress Payal Rohatgi who was last seen in an item number in Corporate. So when she was offered a role in Yash Raj Film's Tashan starring Saif Ali Khan, Akshay Kumar and Kareena Kapoor, why didn't she figure in the film? Payal, surprisingly, blames it to her good looks.

Says the actress, "I don't think anyone can say no to Yash Raj. I was offered a cameo in Tashan opposite Saif Ali Khan. I had a meeting with the director of Tashan (Vijay Krishna Acharya) and I was looking forward to work with them. But I don't know what went wrong because apparently they thought that I was looking prettier or much better in real life presently and felt that they could offer me bigger and better roles in future. This was the feedback I got from my manager."

Payal accepts that she had done some B-grade cinema in the past but doesn't want to associate herself with such films anymore. She prefers to do less work but good cinema. After her last film Corporate, Payal has been away from the limelight for a while. "Right now the phase in my career is such that I am trying to breakaway from the bad cinema or the hard image that I was earlier associated with. I want something on the same lines like Dhol being offered to me. I am just working on my dance. I do a lot of Kathak. Technically Dhol is my only film that's coming out. I travel for shows and it keeps me busy" she adds.

Does she regret doing wrong movies at the start of your career? Payal replies "There's no point regretting about past things. I am already Payal Rohatgi, this is my brand and now its upto me how I use this brand further for myself. Everything comes with a flipside. Today people ask why I did 36 China Town. It was a role opposite Paresh Rawalji but I look at the good side that I got an opportunity to work with an actor like Paresh Rawal and excellent directors like Abbas-Mustan. I am thankful to them for getting me out of the B-grade slot that I was associated with. Anything you do in life you have people appreciating it but you can't keep everybody happy so move on. I am not regretting for all those earlier films. I would appreciate if the media moves ahead with times and changes that image about me."

Though she has only one movie in hand, she is very confident about it. "Dhol is an out and out Priyadarshan sir's film. My role is of a cabaret singer. But my hair, my make-up, my overall get up is not loud or something which I was associated with earlier. It's very much taken care of. It is a glamorous role, it's a comedy film and I am pitched with more senior actors like Tusshar Kapoor, Sharman Joshi, Kunal Khemu and Tanushree Dutta, who is the leading lady. It's a young star cast. I am just hoping that the film does well because it really matters a lot to my career. I don't have any other release for nearly one and a half year. So I am just waiting for this film to come out."

Payal seems to be taking an extra effort to change her image. When we quizzed her about her image makeover she informs that her image makeover has already happened. "I am working with the directors like Pradeep Sarkar. I have shot two ads with him. I don't want to rush into anything from my end. I have my manager doing the running around. I am personally trying and meeting directors and producers whom I want to work with. I was associated with a lot of small films then I did 36 China Town then Corporate and now Dhol is happening. So, I think technically I moved from small films to big films. My image transition is to try to work on my look. I don't want to live the negative category of heroines. I want to be as positive as possible. I want to move up the ladder so I need to look like that. I think I have done the transition to move on from bad cinema to good cinema. Dhol is another film of a plus category. I have got a good role and a good introduction song."

Extremely confident about her role in Dhol Payal feels that her career is depending on this film "I expect a lot from this film. In fact, my whole career is on it. There's no gamble here because I don't have another film. I am just banking on this film and however the role turns out; I did my conscious efforts to give my 100 per cent whether it came to my grooming or my scenes. How much ever I could do for this character I did for this film from my end. Technically, it's a Priyadarshan film, who is a very respectable director. You can just close your eyes and do the shooting. I haven't been offered anything better than this. Yash Raj thought that I look pretty and they can offer me something better which was a compliment in itself. I want to work with them but I don't have excitement or drive to do work which will make me chose wrong films. So right now it's only Dhol. I would be lying if I say I am not banking on role" she signs off.

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