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Posted on 02/27/2018 by monica with Comments Off on “The most important thing in life is to be able to strike a balance.” Filed under: Interviews

Lara Dutta made headlines when she won the coveted Miss Universe title in 2000. Dutta was not only beautiful but she also won hearts with her intelligence. 18 years later this beauty diva stands as one of the most inspiring Indian actresses of Bollywood. She advocates healthy living, dons the producer’s hat with proud, works for fun, is married to ace player Mahesh Bhupati and is enjoying the best phase of her life ‘motherhood’.

You are a perfect example of an independent, empowered woman. From winning the Miss Universe title to becoming one of the most sought after actresses of Bollywood. How would you describe your journey when you look back?

It’s been a long one… (smiles..) I don’t know whether it’s a long one or a short one.  I don’t think I ever made any calculated step in my career. I think life just kind of happened to me. I always try to do the best with the opportunities that pave my way. But I think it’s a wonderful responsibility to be a role model for a lot of young women out there in the world. Constantly striving to make life a mission so that I can be a guide or a mentor to young women so that they can know that they can actually have it all without having to compromise on their belief system or on their values or on their health. It takes a little of hard work and a bit of a choice.

You wear many hats from being an actor, producer, a health enthusiast, a doting wife and a caring mother. Which role you enjoy the most?

I think the most rewarding part at this point of my life is motherhood. All mothers say that when they have their children that becomes their priority. It’s amazing. I have a little girl who is very smart and very bright as much as I try and teach her the right things in life; she is my teacher as well. I learn a lot of things from my daughter every day.

Today, the film industry has changed manifold. How do you see the transformation?

It has. I think every actor when they have been in the business for more than a decade can see the changes that have happened for sure. I think today, women have a lot more freedom, they are taking more active side of the role. Today, a lot of actresses are producing their own films, have their own production companies. And it’s not easy in a business which is male star driven industry. I mean if they are the big stars so the launching films don’t be much of a challenge because the minute they announce a film 500 people come running to  produce it but for the girls it’s not so easy. Donning the producers hat, conceptualising a film to raising finance for it is far more difficult process but it’s far more rewarding than just being an actor in somebody else’s film. Today women are stepping up to that challenge, wanting to provide films that have better content for women in the business. And it’s getting better and better for female directors, female actors and female producers. I think the regressive stage is now behind us. And we are definitely going to have more interesting characters on screen.

You are very selective about the kinds of films that you do. What made you say– yes for ‘Welcome to New York’?

Laughs.. I wasn’t given much of a choice for Welcome to New York because the people who own IIFA awards are very very dear friends and they told that without Boman, Riteish and me they won’t make this film. Between the three of us we have hosted something like 12 IIFAs and we are kind of a family almost so there was no asking what was the role and what was the length of the role. I was happy to be part of it. It was like a picnic for a bunch of friends and having fun. While we were doing that we made a movie.

Since this is a comedy film, any funny incident that you want to share with us during the shoot of the film?

There were many which you will see when you see the film. What you see in the film is pretty much the environment of the film. Then we have a lot of actors who are making fun of themselves. Everyone who wanted to be part of the film wanted to be a part of a funny sequence.

And nobody actually stood and said oh…I need to be portrayed in this kind or manner but IIFA award itself is normally an opportunity to come together and have fun…

‘Welcome to New York’ is India’s first comedy in 3D and  has Karan Johar, Boman Irani, Ritesh Deshmukh, Sonakshi ,Diljit and this is the first time you worked with Sonakshi ,Diljit , so they must have learnt a lot from you but anything that you learnt from them? 

Well, I think Diljit is a surprise package and I saw him in Udta Punjab first time on screen . He has got such a refreshing approach to doing comedy. And he’s one of the most straight faced kind of actors and delivers really funny hilarious lines and he’s not carried away by the kind of stardom that he has achieved . He is really a quiet person in real life. But when he comes alive, when the camera is rolling, it was really wonderful to see him.

Sonakshi is such a talented lovely, girl, who always says that ‘I never thought I would ever join the industry but by default because of the kind of family that she comes from she is here’. But looking at her I couldn’t imagine her in any other profession. She is very dedicated, hard working, comes prepared, it’s a pleasure working with the younger lot of actors. Because they are so much more prepared than we ever were when we started off..(laughs..)

Being a health and fitness enthusiast you have always advocated wellness and healthy living…What is your advice to people who make fitness resolutions but do not follow (including me)?

Laughs..Includes me also a lot of time..

I think the most important thing I found in life is to be able to strike a balance.

Your body, mind soul has to be in absolute harmony but if you push your body so much if you are losing weight and don’t taking rest, you are doing harm to your body. At the same time if you are working in gym and starving yourself you are again not maintaining balance…So the key is to be able to find a balance … A sustainable balance something that sustains for a long period of time.

You got to work out your mind as much as you can. Whatever it is meditation, cross word puzzle whatever it takes make sure you are also exercising that part of your body.

Being a Bollywood Diva what is your beauty mantra?

Ever since my modelling days, my regime has actually been to always be very gentle to my skin and I strongly believe in less is more so the less you fiddle with your skin, the less chemicals you use the better.

So, my mantra is to be gentle, drink a lot of water, use products carefully.  Know exactly what your body wants, when it wants to eat, what it wants to eat so you can just tune in and become aware.

We don’t see you very often in films. But we want to see you more and more. Your comments on that.

Well! You will see me. My responsibility is a bit different in life at this point. To take care of a six year old now but am excited as am doing new things as well, you will see me as a judge in a dance reality show. I have an exciting project as a producer, so you won’t see me in them but definitely part of them. And if exciting things keep coming I will be a part of it.

Your advice to aspiring actors: Work hard, it’s very important to come as an all rounder. Work hard. If you think you are good you need to be better. Nobody can put talent down and you need to believe in yourself 100%.

Message for your fans in Australia:

Well I love Australia, I have been to Australia quite a few times, actually with my husband (Mahesh Bhupathi) who had played some of his tournaments there and I have a lot of family members and friends in Melbourne and it is one my absolute favourite countries in the world and I love to come there and I am pretty sure I will be coming to Australia in a couple of years…

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