‘I can lie with a straight face’
Neha Dhupia is an ‘honest girl’. ‘But I can lie with a straight face’, she tells Millennium Post. And that makes it easy for her to play Sheela, a wannabe actress, in her upcoming I am 24 that released today.
And that’s not all. Also in the pipeline is Rush, a Punjabi film and a big movie that Dhupia has just signed but doesn’t want to talk about yet. ‘Too early,’ she says. In the meantime, she is keeping herself busy, working out to be in shape for her item number in Saheb Biwi aur Gangster 2 for which she will shoot mid-September.
Have item songs become par for the course now, with every top actor vying for one? ‘The size of item songs decides the size of the film now,’ says Dhupia. Is she nervous? ‘I hope I can add value to the song rather than just strutting my stuff. You get compared to too many gorgeous women,’ she says, wistfully. The actor is now working on her look for the song which has been composed by Sandeep Chowta.
In I am 24, Dhupia plays a wannabe actress who is a compulsive liar. ‘She doesn’t think there is anything wrong with lying. Everything about her is wannabe and trying hard,’ says Dhupia, who says she had to let herself go in the film. ‘You are always walking on a tightrope if you are playing an aspiring actor. There are chances that you might end up looking like a wannabe,’ says the Delhi girl. Dhupia had a certain look in mind — the way struggling actors dress up for auditions. Any similarities with the character she portrays? ‘Nope, I am not wannabe from any angle,’ she proclaims.
Looking back, is she happy with the way her career has shaped up? Or is there something amiss? Dhupia admits that she has come a long way, but there are still miles to go. ‘I am happy but not fully satisfied yet,’ she confesses.
But what she finds satisfying is that the directors she has worked with acknowledge her potential. ‘A lot of directors I have worked with describe me as underrated and say I can do better,’ she proudly declares. Would she have it any easier if she were a star kid? ‘They have it much easier. But at the same time, there is a lot of pressure on them,’ she points out.
Dhupia has been around long enough to see the industry change. It’s in that space where the totally commercial and the arty can happily co-exist. ‘Choosing stories depends on the audience. The society has changed,’ quips Dhupia.
And what about marriage plans? ‘I am busy running my life and home and working. I don’t have the time,’ announces Neha Dhupia.