Where Kareena is today, Lolo and I were a decade ago: Raveena Tandon

By Hindustan Times

Raveena Tandon is ready to come back to the big screen and believes she now has the freedom to choose roles that suit her best

You’re coming back on the big screen after a long time. What made you take up Shobhana 7 Nights?
When the script came to me, I was sceptical. I wasn’t sure as it’s based on the dark underbelly of Mumbai high society. I play a woman with whom three generations of men are in love. The film is exciting because of the way the story plays out. It is a bold film and deals with things people are afraid to talk about.

Gulab Gang was first offered to you, but you recommended Madhuri Dixit. Comment.
Yes, but I preferred the negative role to the one offered to me. And I was going to do the film, but later, there were changes made in my role, which I didn’t want. I hope the film does well.

What were you up to during your long break?
I did a lot of TV. You invest less time in it, and it’s more fruitful (laughs). A lot of heroine-oriented films did come my way, but I didn’t want to do them. I wanted to do regular masala films, but nothing challenging was offered. With Shobhana…, I knew it would be a challenge. I had to take my husband’s permission, though.

Your personal life has always been out of the limelight. Is that a conscious effort?
My family has always been my priority. Acting is just a part of my life, but it is not my entire life. Also, marriage, to a large extent, has kept me grounded. As for my kids, I want them to have a normal childhood. I don’t want them to feel special from a young age. If I take them for some kiddy event and the photographers happen to click their pictures, I can’t stop that. But I try keeping them away as much as I can.

Many of your contemporaries are also coming back to films, but not many have done well. What do you think of your chances?
Where Kareena (Kapoor) is today, Lolo (Karisma Kapoor) and I were a decade ago. We’ve been there, done that. Today, I have evolved as a person. I now choose only roles that suit my personality. And in the industry, there’s room for everyone. I’ve already proven what I had to, and I’m not here to compete with anyone. That would be foolish.

Did you know?
The 1993 blockbuster Darr was originally offered to Raveena Tandon, but she declined it, as she did not want to wear a swimming costume.

The famous song ‘Chaiyya chaiyya’ from Dil Se (1998) was first offered to Raveena Tandon, but she refused it as she did not want to be typecast with doing only special songs.

Karan Johar offered Rani Mukerji’s part in Kuch Kuch Hota Hain (1998) to Raveena, but she did not take it up as she felt a newer face would do better justice to the role.

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