'I want to explore more than just be a pretty face.'
Nargis Fakhri returns with a movie release after disappearing from Bollywood for a while. Beaming with rejuvenated energy, Nargis lists the kind of films she wishes she could have done.
The actor, whose last outing was the 2020 Netflix film Torbaaz, will be seen in the Anupam Kher-Neena Gupta-led slice of life, Shiv Shastri Balboa.
"If you want to have good content, it's like you wanting to have a great cake, you can't skip the eggs or the butter, because then it won't taste as good," Nargis tells Mayur Sanap/Rediff.com.
Now that you are back to Mumbai, what are your big plans?
My big plans? Well, my big plans are to get back to work! (laughs)
But seriously, now with this new era of OTT, there's so much more content coming out, with different roles and such diversity.
I'm really excited to be here again because it's more opportunities to play different characters, or to be a part of different Web series or films.
Yeah, more work. And more variety.
What kind of work are you hoping to do in this phase of your career?
I want to explore more than just be a pretty face, you know. Obviously, being a supporting actor, having a supporting role is super important.
If you want to have good content, it's like you wanting to have a great cake, you can't skip the eggs or the butter, because then it won't taste as good.
So every character, whether big or small, it's vital to making that piece of work successful.
Whatever comes my way, I'm looking forward to the experience.
I don't want to have boundaries or limitations.
In Shiv Shastri Balboa, you feature alongside actors like Anupam Kher and Neena Gupta. How was your experience working with them?
It was so much fun to work with them because they are fun to be around.
People who have been in the business for long are so warm and helpful.
I know Anupam as a teacher. When we were doing a scene, if I did it one way, he would say think about it in this way.
He used to give tips. I think it comes very easy for him to teach you and I appreciate him for that.
You were away from the spotlight for a long time. How did you utilise that time?
Oh, I'm never away from the spotlight because of social media.
I'm always being reminded, 'Oh, don't forget to post this, don't forget to post that.'
As long as you're posting, you're never forgotten.
Even coming back, I'm not forgotten. People know I'm back and I'm getting calls like crazy.
You spoke about dealing with mental health issues. What was that phase like and are you in a happy space now?
Every human being goes through their ups and downs, it's just natural.
I'm just a moody person anyway because I'm an emotional person.
But happiness is a state of mind, and it comes and goes for every human.
You just have to know that there are good days and bad days.
So am I happy at this moment? Well, I'm just tired (laughs) but I'm happy because I'm laughing and chatting with you.
You just said you don't want to be a pretty face in films anymore. Do you think the industry has typecast you?
I mean I'm just so beautiful, you can't help it! (laughs)
No, I am just kidding.
I don't know about typecasting, but obviously, if I am a face that people want to see in that space, it means they enjoy looking at you, right?
But I would like to do different kinds of roles.
I would even do a role where I have to dress up like a man!
For me, I'm willing to remove the boundaries and go further.
Are you reaching out to film-makers for the kind of work you wish to do?
I'm in touch with different film-makers, and there's some things happening, which I'm excited about.
Have you figured out the nature of the beast that Bollywood is?
(Pauses) You know, there's no real formula to be honest.
And each person has a different desire.
My desires would not be the same as yours.
Yes, figuring out how things work, I understand that now. Sometimes I don't understand but mostly, I have got the hang of it.
Knowing what I want is the most important thing. When I'm clear on what I want, life and everything else becomes easier.
Which is the most creatively satisfying role in your filmography?
Rockstar. I love the story so much.
It has left such an impression in your heart that, to this day, you feel the movie.
To be a part of that film was a life-changing experience. I hope that a film like that will come to me again.
What recent film that you wish you were a part of?
Are you gonna laugh at me?
This is such a silly example (smiles).
I just watched Katrina Kaif's Phone Bhoot and I really enjoyed it.
I generally like horror comedy films, and I was like, 'Oh, I'd love to be in that.'
But I also like serious stuff.
I watched this south film called Yashoda. Did you see it? It was damn good!
I really liked that girl's character and it was a cool story.
During her fight scenes when she was trying to get away, I was like, how does she do that? She's pregnant, but how does she know how to fight? In the end, it showed you that she was training.
I really loved that film.