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Bollywood teen icon Genelia D’Souza is too busy these days with her films IT’S MY LIFE, HOOK YA CROOK and URUMI. In Kolkata to launch Nocturne lounge, the actor tells our correspondent that she won’t change her mad self for anything.
How will you define yourself as a person?
I am a person who loves to chill out more than anything else. I spent my entire college life at Cafe Coffee Day at Carter Road (Mumbai). Even today, I have not changed my lifestyle; I still walk my way from home to the cafe, though now at times, it’s a bit difficult because of my hectic schedules.
And also, because people recognize you?
Yes. But unlike other stars, I thoroughly enjoy it. I get super-excited when someone calls me by my name. I too scream back: ‘Aiyeee’. I know, at times, this creates confusion. So I try not to do my mad things all the time.
Tell us about your childhood days.
I grew up in Bandra. I am a complete sportsgirl; I have played everything-from basketball to hockey…the Joggers Park has so much been a part of my life because of my trainings. Not many people know that I am a state-level athlete. People used to call me a tomboy, though I used to say that I am a tomboy with a feminine side, though even I don’t know what that means. (Laughs) I am a mad girl…fully.
How did Bollywood happen to you?
One day I got a call from Ramoji Rao saying he is doing a Hindi film called TUJHE MERI KASAM and wants to launch me! Now, it was bad enough that I got into modeling because I was from a family who has no clue about the glamour world. And films were something I couldn’t even thought of attempting; first because, I was clueless about acting. And then, in my family, films were like ‘No no no, it is a bad world and we can’t get into it…blah blah blah.’ And these guys kept calling me for a month-and-a-half. Then, my mom said this is an opportunity and that I should try it out. I always have the option to quit if I am not happy with it.
So are you happy the way your acting career has shaped up in Bollywood as well as in South?
I am totally satisfied. I had a peak, I had a fall, and I have a peak again. But I was never out of work. However, my worst phase taught me a lot. When I am in a hit phase now, I know things can go down. I am really lucky that I got accepted in four industries (Hindi, Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam).
You are mostly projected as a young, bubbly, chirpy girl. Are you happy with your image?
Absolutely. I am young, fun-loving. I don’t want people to know me as someone who is very reserved and serious type, because I am not.
What is the best thing you got yourself after becoming a star?
My Bandra apartment. I love bright colours and decked it up accordingly. You will find a red living area, an orange-and-white study-cum-gym, a blue-and-pink bedroom. My home reflects my vibrancy.