Kangana Ranaut is super excited about Ketan Mehta’s period extravaganza, a biopic on Rani Lakshmibai, which rolls next year. “It is a beautiful story, one I haven’t been able to disassociate from since I heard it. I’m looking forward to playing a mother and a warrior on screen. It’s such a fabulous role that as an actor I don’t know what I’ll do next. May be I should get into direction,” she laughs.
The 28-year-old actress is happy that for Vishal Bhardwaj’s ‘Rangoon’ she’s learning riding, sword fighting and even ballet with an instructor from Argentina, Fernando. “It’s helping me to prepare for Rani Lakshmibai too,” she reasons.
In Bhardwaj’s Casablanca like love triangle, set against the Second World War, she plays a 1940s movie star who entertains British troops and had been to New York to research the times. “I just see performers in live shows and learn their body language. At the time, Indian culture, its people and cinema, was heavily influenced by the West. I’ve bought some reference material,” she informs.
From the Big Apple she took off to Mexico and spent 10 days on the beaches with books for company. “Next on my wish list is Japan, I have to visit Tokyo,” she asserts.
But before she can take off for another vacation, there’s work in plenty with Rangoon and Hansal Mehta’s upcoming ‘Simran’. Buzz is, Kangana’s character is inspired by Sandeep Kaur who went to California and got involved in criminal activities. “I do play a bank robber in the film. The story is inspired by real life incidents but not directly by Sandeep Kaur. It’s about a Gujarati girl who dreams of making it big. She sets out to fulfil her mother’s dream but ends up losing everything,” she clarifies.
As part of her prep, Kangana plans to visit Gujarat, get her accent right. “I’m going to have so much fun with this character. She is very self-assured, that’s an endearing trait about the community,” she smiles.
Kangana herself is a confident girl but admits to an attack of nerves when she recently shot for a commercial with Amitabh Bachchan. “It can get really nerve-racking when someone thinks so highly of you as a performer and has so much regard for you. I confided to Raju sir (Rajkumar Hirani) that I have never been so nervous working with any other actor. But Mr Bachchan, he’s very childlike on the sets, he chats up everyone and that relaxed me,” she reminisces. “I hope some day we get to do a film together. Even Raju sir is keen to work with me and we’re looking at scripts.”
Meanwhile, she’s looking forward to Nikhil Advani’s Katti Batti, a special love story. “I just don’t focus on scripts that glorifies me as an actor. It’s intoxicating when you get these central characters. I want to do films I believe in,” she insists.