'I don't think anyone can say no to Yash Raj' - Payal Rohatgi


By Reshma Kelkar, IndiaFM

Nobody from Bollywood would ideally say no to an offer from Yash

Raj Films. Especially if it’s small time actress Payal Rohatgi who was last

seen in an item number in Corporate. So when she was offered a role in

Yash Raj Film’s Tashan starring Saif Ali Khan, Akshay Kumar and

Kareena Kapoor, why didn’t she figure in the film? Payal, surprisingly,

blames it to her good looks.

Says the actress, “I don’t think anyone can say no to Yash Raj. I was

offered a cameo in Tashan opposite Saif Ali Khan. I had a meeting with the

director of Tashan (Vijay Krishna Acharya) and I was looking forward to

work with them. But I don’t know what went wrong because apparently

they thought that I was looking prettier or much better in real life presently

and felt that they could offer me bigger and better roles in future. This was

the feedback I got from my manager.”

Payal accepts that she had done some B-grade cinema in the past but

doesn’t want to associate herself with such films anymore. She prefers to

do less work but good cinema. After her last film Corporate, Payal has

been away from the limelight for a while. “Right now the phase in my

career is such that I am trying to breakaway from the bad cinema or the

hard image that I was earlier associated with. I want something on the same

lines like Dhol being offered to me. I am just working on my dance. I do a

lot of Kathak. Technically Dhol is my only film that’s coming out. I travel

for shows and it keeps me busy” she adds.

Does she regret doing wrong movies at the start of your career? Payal

replies “There’s no point regretting about past things. I am already Payal

Rohatgi, this is my brand and now its upto me how I use this brand further

for myself. Everything comes with a flipside. Today people ask why I did

36 China Town. It was a role opposite Paresh Rawalji but I look at the

good side that I got an opportunity to work with an actor like Paresh Rawal

and excellent directors like Abbas-Mustan. I am thankful to them for

getting me out of the B-grade slot that I was associated with. Anything you

do in life you have people appreciating it but you can’t keep everybody

happy so move on. I am not regretting for all those earlier films. I would

appreciate if the media moves ahead with times and changes that image

about me.”

Though she has only one movie in hand, she is very confident about it.

“Dhol is an out and out Priyadarshan sir’s film. My role is of a cabaret

singer. But my hair, my make-up, my overall get up is not loud or

something which I was associated with earlier. It’s very much taken care

of. It is a glamorous role, it’s a comedy film and I am pitched with more

senior actors like Tusshar Kapoor, Sharman Joshi, Kunal Khemu and

Tanushree Dutta, who is the leading lady. It’s a young star cast. I am just

hoping that the film does well because it really matters a lot to my career. I

don’t have any other release for nearly one and a half year. So I am just

waiting for this film to come out.”

Payal seems to be taking an extra effort to change her image. When we

quizzed her about her image makeover she informs that her image

makeover has already happened. “I am working with the directors like

Pradeep Sarkar. I have shot two ads with him. I don’t want to rush into

anything from my end. I have my manager doing the running around. I am

personally trying and meeting directors and producers whom I want to

work with. I was associated with a lot of small films then I did 36 China

Town then Corporate and now Dhol is happening. So, I think technically I

moved from small films to big films. My image transition is to try to work

on my look. I don’t want to live the negative category of heroines. I want

to be as positive as possible. I want to move up the ladder so I need to

look like that. I think I have done the transition to move on from bad

cinema to good cinema. Dhol is another film of a plus category. I have got

a good role and a good introduction song.”

Extremely confident about her role in Dhol Payal feels that her career is

depending on this film “I expect a lot from this film. In fact, my whole

career is on it. There’s no gamble here because I don’t have another film. I

am just banking on this film and however the role turns out; I did my

conscious efforts to give my 100 per cent whether it came to my grooming

or my scenes. How much ever I could do for this character I did for this

film from my end. Technically, it’s a Priyadarshan film, who is a very

respectable director. You can just close your eyes and do the shooting. I

haven’t been offered anything better than this. Yash Raj thought that I look

pretty and they can offer me something better which was a compliment in

itself. I want to work with them but I don’t have excitement or drive to do

work which will make me chose wrong films. So right now it’s only Dhol. I

would be lying if I say I am not banking on role” she signs off.