Yesteryear’s glam queen Zeenat Aman unspools her memories

All that is simple is not devoid of a wondrous depth. Veteran actress Zeenat Aman expanded upon diverse topics ranging from her love for rice and 'dal' to the chutzpah that unconventional roles in movies demand.

SourceIANS

New Delhi, June 30 (IANS) All that is simple is not devoid of a wondrous depth. Veteran actress Zeenat Aman expanded upon diverse topics ranging from her love for rice and ‘dal’ to the chutzpah that unconventional roles in movies demand.

Zeenat opened up about her choice for food and said: “I am a vegetarian and my favourite food is dal chawal.”

The actress who gave several hits such as ‘Satyam Shivam Sundaram’, ‘Hare Rama Hare Krishna’, ‘Qurbaani’, ‘Dhund’, ‘Don’, ‘Manoranjan’ and ‘Yaadon Ki Baarat’, was known for doing unconventional roles and breaking the on screen image of traditional Indian women with her bold and bindaas persona.

She said: “I was bold enough to take up roles that other celebrities were hesitant to take up. When I pause and look back, I feel blessed that I had so many opportunities.”

While talking about her favourite director, she took the name of legendary Raj Kapoor and called him a ‘perfectionist’.

Among her most challenging projects, she said: “It was ‘Satyam Shivam Sundaram’ and ‘Hare Rama Hare Krishna’ .”

When asked about the most embarrassing moment of her life she said: “Most embarrassing moment for me is when people come and request me to sign autographs as Parveen Babi or Shabana Azmi.”

The actress started her career with modelling and also worked as a journalist. “I took up journalism as I love writing.”

On how she bagged Dev Anand’s ‘Hare Rama Hare Krishna’, the actress recalled: “The film’s director OP Ralhan knew that Dev Anand was looking for an actress for the film. A lot of the actresses had turned down the role because they wanted to play the romantic lead. So, OP Ralhan organised a meeting with Dev Anand. I was in my room, smoking a pipe, wearing a skirt, and he(Dev Anand) considered me to be perfect for the role.”

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She further shared: “I had the good fortune of working with a lot of actor-directors like Dev Anand, Raj Kapoor, Shammi Kapoor, Manoj Kumar, Amjad Khan, Feroz Khan and Sanjay Khan. Many of these were filmmakers and actors. So they brought that extra bit of creativity.”

She also talked about working in the movie ‘Shalimar’ starring Dharmendra, Zeenat Aman, Shammi Kapoor, Prem Nath and Aruna Irani. The film was being made in Hindi and English both at the same time and the actress recalled how two tutors were appointed, one for Zeenat to teach Hindi and other for Dharmendra for English.

“It was so funny after the shoot, Dharmendra used to be in his room with his English teacher and I would be with my Hindi teacher.”

She also gave her piece of advice to the actress of today’s generation, saying: “Today’s female stars have to be careful while choosing roles as a wrong choice affects them in the long run.”

Later, she also emphasised on certain positive changes in the film industry: “I think our girls are doing wonderful projects. They’re doing women-oriented films and they are asking for fair pay and there is more pay parity now as compared to that time.”

On her OTT projects, Zeenat shared: “I have just completed two web series. I enjoy my work but in short quantity.”

She asserted that now she wants to take up those roles that she had not played before. “I’m going to try a lot of things that I haven’t done. Maybe I would write, maybe direct a project and a lot of things that I look forward to.”

On the question of trolling that many have to face today, she said: ” For several personal reasons I am not on social media but trolling was done during our times also in different ways.”

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