After some initial recognition at her debut opposite Ranbir Kapoor, Nargis Fakhri’s career has been a mix of ups and downs.
However, today she has a slew of films in her Kitty. She is expecting some success with Azhar where she plays the role of actress Sangeeta Bijlani and the second wife of cricketer Mohammad Azharuddin.
She also has a cameo appearance in Rohit Shetty’s Dishoom and doing a parallel lead in Housefull 3.
Here the actress speaks about her films, what she seeks from life and how she is coping with work in an alien land like Bollywood (she is from the US).Excerpts…
What was that one thing about Sangeeta Bijlani that struck you?
Her beauty ! She’s beautiful, her body language was so graceful and beautiful and her hair. I got to wear the hair and the clothes and for a girl who has been a model. In real life I wear pants and t-shirts I don’t wear so much make-up and dress up. Here I got to experiment. The love story between these two was very intense and nice story.
How do you look at your Journey in Bollywood?
It is very difficult. It has been very tumultuous with lots of ups and downs. I feel blessed because I have got enough work, a lot of people have to struggle today. It is tough but I have what you say a little bit of Kismat. It’s tough because I am alone here and I have to struggle with the language. I can understand Hindi but I can’t communicate. Sometimes I miss things when they are said fast. When you use big words things get lost in translation. If I can express my true feelings I can do it in my language because I understand it.
Have you faced rejections any time?
I feel rejected all the time. I feel like an alien. I always feel that people don’t like me.
Why do you feel that?
A lot of people behaved strangely. I got a lot of criticism for Rockstar. It’s okay but nothing can be worse now, it can only be better.
What do you find difficult here?
Everything in life is difficult here, it’s very stressful. If you are not born here or raised here it’s very tough coming from another place that’s very different and way things work and if you are not so busy and life is not hectic then it’s tough.
Have you made friends in the industry? Are you in touch with Ranbir?
Not really, the AD (assistant director) on Rockstar is my friend. My management is my friend as I work so much and spend so much time with them. My driver is my friend. My maid is my friend and I help her clean. Varun Dhawan, yes. I don’t speak to many people after my films are over. I came here as an alien and understand that your business is very busy so when you are free you have to dedicate time to your family and your real friends. My real friends are abroad and I have to go see them and keep in touch or else I will lose the foundation of friendship.
Do you feel lonely?
I do feel very lonely and most of the times I talk to myself.
How do you take care of your skin and health here?
I don’t wear makeup and you have to keep washing your skin and face all the time, I use cleanser and moisturiser. I drink a lot of water. I drink two to three litres a day. You have to keep yourself hydrated. I do pilates every day. I have hurt my knee so I am taking it easy. I wake up at 6.00 in the morning and go to the gym. I work out. My diet is healthy and I have to take care of the leptin level because when you go older you have to take care. You can’t walk much in Mumbai. I sleep early as possible and wake up early in the morning. When I am hungry I have herbal tea, peppermint with honey and clear soup. I am eating a lot of greens. I eat broccoli, potatoes, cauliflower something boring. Everyone thinks vegetables are boring but they are not. I wanted to be a vegetarian but it lasts for six months. Every so often I do vegetarian food and then I feel better. I have a stir fry or something.
What does success mean to you?
What you might value and believe to be success may not be what I believe it to be. Right now I don’t think I am successful because I am not happy. because I don’t get to see my friends and family. The more I see my friends and family and still balance my job then I might say I am successful. So right now I am trying to figure out and restructure my life.
Any dream projects in mind?
I would like to have a farm not the kind you see in films. I want it to be holistic, healing. A bed and breakfast place where people can relax and heal and get away from this kind of life. They can have vegetables, organic things I can grow there.
Have you found love?
I have learned it’s very weird to say but best love and important love, is self love. It’s important to love yourself. No one will love you better than you love yourself. If you don’t love yourself you won’t get a good partner. And I believe you should never settle. You should never try so hard to find a boyfriend to get married. I don’t care where he is right now. He is going to come when I love myself and everything is in order properly. You should not hold on to someone. You should become a full individual and you find a full individual and then you become partners When that happens God only knows. For now I am focusing and balancing work and seeing my family and friends.
And things woman should know in relationship?
Love yourself the most and not the other person. You do so much for the other person and he does nothing for you. Then you are left all alone, no job and then there are kids. then you become depressed. If you take care and love yourself first and take a job and save your money on your own. If they leave you won’t cry so much.
What is the beauty of a woman?
It’s her personality and her love and the compassion you are able to give. Men have trouble expressing love. Women express better and love each other more.
Do you feel that this is a body obsessed industry?
Yes, it’s sad unfortunately. We have done it ourselves. You want to see someone like me shaking and dancing. It’s natural, like we love flowers and leaves.
How would you describe yourself?
I am shy, super friendly, emotional. I learnt to be an introvert here because I don’t know a lot of people some of them are judgmental. I like to be alone. I like the atmosphere to be fun all the time.
What do you do in your spare time?
I do a lot of reading and I am obsessed with natural healing and Ayurveda.
What have you discovered about yourself in the last few years?
I found a negative side of me. Being angry because I can’t control things. If things are not organised, I can’t bear it. If I can’t plan and organise I get angry because I can’t control the situation. If I want to see my mother I can’t see her because they will tell me when to see my mother. There’s a lot of frustration I am learning with meditation to let go and go with the flow. I am learning to let the emotions flow and trust in a Higher Power. After meditation, you feel calm at heart.