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'People treat me well as I'm Govinda's daughter'

Last updated on: November 19, 2009 17:30 IST

'People treat me well as I'm Govinda's daughter'

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Patcy N in Mumbai

Govinda's daughter Narmmadaa Ahuja is all set to try her fate in showbiz, as she gets ready to make her filmi debut.

The 21-year-old Cancerian -- born on July 16 -- seems quite excited about the turn her life promises to take. She talks to Patcy N about her aspirations, and gives us a closer look about how it feels to be Govinda's daughter.

So what's it like to be Govinda's daughter?

Sometimes you get importance. People treat me well, and I like that.

But it's not always like that. If I was late to school, teachers would say that you're Govinda's daughter so you will tend to be late like him. If I got low marks, they would think I'm always away on his shoots and not studying. But my teachers liked me because I was mischievous and funny. I would get suspended from school because of my masti.

Plus, since my father is an actor, there are people who like him and people who don't. If someone said anything bad about him, I would not like it. But as I grew up, I cared less about what people thought.

There was a boy in my class, who was a die-hard fan of Govinda. It would get very embarrassing for me because he would act like him all the time.

In our dramatic classes, whenever someone had to do comedy or mimicry, they would choose my father's film and I would get embarrassed.


Image: Narmmadaa Ahuja

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'My father was never strict'

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Did you ever get into a fight if someone criticized your father?

Never. It was okay for me because at the end of the day, they were his audience. The atmosphere at home was very filmi. People would discuss films all the time so my mind was conditioned that to the fact that there were people who liked my father and those who didn't.

Sometimes my father would drop me to school, and all the children would ask him for autographs. I would love that.

Is Govinda a strict father?

No, he was mostly funny. He never took up my studies. If I failed in any subject, he would say 'chalta hai, next time pass hojayegi [it's okay, she will pass next time].'

I would go on the sets of his films when he went for long schedules. But we would never be allowed more than three or four days. I never missed him (when he was away) because my upbringing was like that. I had never seen him doing the normal things that fathers do for their kids.

Now that we have grown up, he tries to teach us the ways of life. He chats about the events happening around.


Image: Narmmadaa Ahuja

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'I never bothered about his controversies'

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Govinda is a great dancer and actor. What about you?

I have to work on my dance. I want to do comedy movies like him. My comic timing is good sometimes. Comedy mere rag rag main hai (comedy is in my genes).

Are you afraid of being compared to your father?

Yes, and very annoyed too. But I'm prepared.

As a child, did his flops or controversies affect you?

No. I was not mature enough to understand that. I never bothered about his controversies because he did his part as an father. He gave me everything I wanted. So I did not think it was right to interfere in his personal life.

When did you tell your father that you wanted to be an actor?

When I was 17 years old. He told me it involved a lot of hard work. He suggested that I become a producer instead. But I said I would manage. The next year, I started preparing for it.

Since then, he has been giving me tips and sharing his experiences. He told me how to behave on the sets, how to do action scenes, how to be careful while shooting, how to perform... But I don't really follow whatever he says because at the end of the day, everybody has their own style.


Image: Narmmadaa Ahuja

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'I didn't think the change in my spelling would change my life'

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Why did you change the spelling of your name?

I did it at a time when changing the spellings of names and movies had become a trend. I didn't realise it was numerology. I was fascinated by it, so changed the spelling of my name. I didn't think the change would change my life. But now, things are rolling for me.

Were your parents okay with the change in spelling?

I did not tell my parents about it. They came to know about it when I asked my manager to change the spelling in my passport and required documents. But they were not upset.

Did you always want to become an actress?

Since I was very bad in studies and frankly, not interested in it, I did a course in fashion and jewellery designing because all my friends were doing it. After two years, I realised, I was not cut out for it. My interest in acting had increased by then, as I started getting offers from producers. So I decided to become an actress.


Image: Narmmadaa Ahuja

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'I was a plump before but now, I have lost those extra kilos'

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Where did you learn acting?

I joined Kishore Nammit Kapoor's acting classes for three months. Then I went to a filmmaking institute in London, where I learnt some basics and how to apply make-up. I have learnt western dance but have to learn Indian classical dance. I will start diction classes next month.

What about fitness?

I was a plump before but now, I have lost those extra kilos. I don't follow a fitness regime though I do workout and go on diets. I don't stress my body out. Eighty percent of your fitness is in your diet. You should have some amount of carbs, fats and proteins in your diet.

I eat healthy -- like muffins or egg whites with parathas for breakfast. If I had partied the previous night, then I only have biscuits with tea or coffee.

My lunch consists of either sandwiches or chicken curry and rice. I rarely have roti-subzi.

My dinner is very light -- just salads, almonds and walnuts. Before I go to sleep, I drink a glass of milk.


Image: Narmmadaa Ahuja

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'I want to do commercial and entertaining films like Partner'

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Have you signed any film yet?

No. I started getting offers when I was 18 but didn't take them up because I felt I was not ready for it. The first impression is always the last impression, so I have to be well prepared.

I read a few scripts but did not like them. My friend is writing a film for me now because I don't want to waste time listening to scripts. When my script is ready, we will take it to the production house which had approached me earlier. Our film should be on the floors by January or February.

What about the rumours that Salman was going to launch you?

Those are not true. People may have speculated that because I walked the carpet with him at IFFA.

I was supposed to walk the carpet with my father but since I was not ready, he left. I was disappointed that I could not go with him. When Salman asked me what had happened, I told him. So he asked me to walk with him and I said okay. I didn't realise people would think so much into it.

What kind of a launch film do you want?

I want to do commercial and entertaining films like Partner. I like films like Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gaam.


Image: Narmmadaa Ahuja

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