Power Icon: Deepika Padukone
Less than four years post the release of Om Shanti Om, young Deepika Padukone is sitting pretty with a clutch of projects and both Indian and international brand endorsements in her kitty. The last 12 months have been eventful ones for the young actor, for reasons, personal and professional. Five films released – Break Ke Baad, Khelein Hum Jeen Jaan Se, Karthik Calling Karthik, Lafangey Parindey and Housefull. Off screen, she made news post her break-up with Ranbir Kapoor, by being often seen at several events with UB scion, Sidhartha Mallya and for sharing classified information in a national chat show while wickedly flashing her dimples.
Though all her recent films may not have been blockbusters, Padukone has no regrets. She says, “I ended up doing non conventional roles. I am proud that my directors think I am versatile enough to be able to carry off a variety of characters and each film made me grow as an actor. My focus is on my work. I want to be selective and enjoy every moment of what I am doing. With this comes confidence.”
She owes her level-headedness to the man who has brought her up – Prakash Padukone, her father. “My best example of how to behave is at home,” she says. “Dad is known internationally. But it has not turned his head. On a personal level too, he is a good human being, someone who is completely grounded and real. Like him, I am passionate about sports in general and am associated with the Olympic Gold Quest. I enjoy following Formula 1 and cricket too.”
Ask her to describe herself and her gameplan for the future and the Bengaluru-bred, Mumbai-based actor who is soon to shift to a swanky apartment in central Mumbai, replies, “I am a mix of the traditional and modern, simple and sexy, classy and classic. As far as work and life goes, I do plan a little but not too much in advance. I am excited about working with Amitabh Bachchan and Rajnikanth in the same year. It is all happening to me. And in the ultimate analysis, I don’t calculate the time I have spent in the industry. That is not my focus. My focus is doing good work. I don’t want to burn out too soon.”