A self-confessed perfectionist from head to toe, Tamannaah admits to having always nurtured a penchant for acting. Having worked in the Tamil, Telugu and Hindi film industries, she has completed over 50 films and has rightfully earned her place in the memories of many. A dance enthusiast who dreams of starring in an out-and-out dance film, in between posing and preening for the camera, Verve catches up with the girl who loves make-up and discovers more about her journey, working in various languages and what awards mean to her.
“Women have become very accomplished in every field — not just in India, but all over the world as well. Films are a reflection of society, in some way or the other — of course, things are put out there in an entertaining format. And, over a period of time, great parts are being written for women. We’re not at par with the West yet, but we’re getting there. There is a noticeable sea of change between 10 years ago and now. These days, parts and sometimes films too, are written for women and for different age groups too. Earlier you wouldn’t find parts being written for women in their 40s or more, but now, different parts are being written for women who are more mature and that is really good for us because the longevity of a female actor has definitely increased.”
“Even though I am doing cinema in different languages, the dynamics are exactly the same. The fact that there’s a director and the way the films are shot, I think it’s the same the world over. I’ve had the good fortune of working with a lot of technicians in the last year from the West as well, and I’ve come to realise that they all kind of do the same thing. We’re not really doing things differently — the only thing is that our culture and our sensibilities are different. When I forayed from South Indian films to Hindi films, all the differences that I saw were cultural. Everyone has their own little things and nuances that are very peculiar and very unique to their culture, and the films we do reflect that.”
“I get very excited when I have won an award, but I don’t take it too seriously. Because while I appreciate them, and it’s great to be awarded and to be recognised, the moment you start taking it too seriously, it affects how you perceive your work. For me, my work has always been something I want to grow with. Winning awards makes you realise that it’s great to feel good about what you’ve achieved, but the more you keep working, the more you realise that there’s so much more to be done.”
“If one has to grow in what one does, one has to evolve as a person before one can grow in the workspace. So my constant quest is to not only definitely enjoy the journey, but to also seek myself through the work I do. I started working when I was 14 and a half, and because I began so young, the change for me has been drastic. Yet I’m thankful I started young, because I could adapt much faster and better.”
“When you come in so young, you don’t come with any preconceived notions. Maybe if I had been slightly older, learning Tamil and Telugu would have been difficult — I would have done it, but it would have been a much harder process. Accepting a lot of new things would have been a lot more difficult too, but being young, I was malleable and like a sponge — I’m happy that when I walk down memory lane, I feel like there’s been a drastic difference in me and it’s all been a positive one.”