The entire film industry was astounded when up and rising starlet Deepika Padukone chose to bear all on Koffee with Karan with her very unsubtle remarks about Ranbir Kapoor and the history of their relationship. It seems that now Deepika has taken on a whole new avatar, speaking straight from the heart and not censoring herself one bit. Whether speaking about co-stars or potential romantic interests, these days she has no qualms in telling it like it is.
And maybe it’s her success at the box office that’s given her such confidence. Deepika says “I’ve always tried to do something different — right from Om Shanti Om, Love Aaj Kal and now Aarakshan. I’m glad my efforts have been appreciated so far. Somewhere people feel I can be part of these different films which is why they are offered to me. But, it’s not a conscious decision. I don’t think ‘Okay, this year I’ll do one romantic film, one political thriller and so on.’ It depends on what I’m offered at that point of time and if I connect to it.”
Deepika may be well-known for her successful films, but her relationships have also been very much publicized. She prefers to keep private at this point in her life. “Relationships or not, I believe that people don’t need to know about my life beyond a certain point. I understand there is a curiosity about me and Siddharth [Mallya], but there’s only that much I’ll say about my personal life. You can speculate or gossip, it doesn’t bother me.”
What about her alleged make-ups and break-ups with Bollywood bigwigs Shah Rukh Khan and Salman Khan? “I may not be best friends with many, but that does not mean I don’t get along with them. If I wasn’t at SRK’s party it was because I was shooting in Hyderabad. There is no rift or a fight or anything of that sort. I have been offered a lot of films with Salman, unfortunately it has not worked out for many reasons. He is definitely on top of my list of actors I’d die to work with. When the time is right, I will do a film with him. I know he wants to work with me, he knows I want to work with him.”
When asked about her upcoming film Aarakshan co-starring Amitabh Bachchan, Saif Ali Khan and Prateik Babbar, Deepika extols the great working relationship she shares with Saif. “He’s great to work with. He was fantastic in Aarakshan and Cocktail. I can’t think of anyone else who could have done these roles. I am definitely more comfortable working with him now. When you repeat a co-star, there is a comfort level.”
But weren’t there rumours about her and Saif’s ladylove Kareena Kapoor not getting along, especially after Imtiaz Ali chose Dee over Bebo for Love Aaj Kal? “Well that’s her insecurity, I can’t do anything about that. But we’ve had no problems. In fact, when she came to London, we got along well. We went out one night. She was on set and watching the shoot even in Hyderabad. As far as I know, there is nothing wrong. I don’t think she has anything to worry about.”
So that settles the Saifu-Bebo issue, but what of the many suitors that seem to be knocking on her door. Neil Nitin Mukesh recently said that if she were single, he would be the first to be waiting outside her door with a rose. Wow! “I don’t know what’s stopping him. He’s most welcome to come to my doorstep. He’s thinking too much.”
“You know, the sad part is that he and I have moved on. People worry more about us than we worry about ourselves. We’re such good friends now; we’re at an amazing stage today where, relationship or no relationship, we actually speak almost everyday. We’ve put all of that behind us. But people still want to go back to what he said/she said one or two years ago.” What if Ranbir Kapoor said he wanted Deepika back? “If and when that happens, we’ll think about it then.”
Hmm, interesting. Siddharth better keep on his toes, because this firebrand is definitely a no-nonsense kinda gal!