I want to be more choosy about my films
...says Amala Paul, who is fresh from the success of VIP2
Amala Paul warms up very quickly. A conversation with her goes as it would with friends you’ve known a long time. This isn’t altogether surprising, considering how she describes herself as a ‘complete nomad at heart’. She has been trying to manage multiple projects, while also doing a fair bit of travelling around the world, thanks to the "incredible support from friends and family”, including her manager. “If it weren’t for them, I would not be able to shoot for more than five projects simultaneously. I am committed to many projects, this year, but from 2018, I'll be extremely choosy about the films I do," she says.
Does this mean she’s going to move on from films? "I don't want to do films just for the sake of making a point. I'll continue to work as long as people want to see me on screen."
The Velayilla Pattadhari actress has Thiruttu Payale 2 and Bhaskar Oru Rascal besides a few Malayalam projects. She has done little else but act for the last three years. "I have missed many birthdays. But I don't regret my choices. I love to keep myself busy. Whatever I choose to do, I do it diligently. I don’t shirk from hard work,” she says.
Amala believes that an actor always works. “Even when not in front of the camera, I’m watching films, observing people... You get the idea,” she says. "All of this is self-taught. I remember something somebody once told me: 'No matter how big or small the role is, it is the impact that matters.' These words have stayed with me since. My career is the sum of all the decisions I have made."
Two to tango
Favourite director: Sanjay Leela Bhansali
Favourite actor: Kangana Ranaut
Does she agree she does the girl-next-door role a lot? “Trust me, I want to break free from that stereotype too. I am an actor first, after all, and I think I can play any role. In fact, I've actually had some different offers come my way also. I was almost on board for the Queen remake, but it didn’t happen because of date issues," she says. The actress realises that her work across South India has familiarised directors with her work. "I don’t think language should be a barrier to doing something good. If something good comes my way, I will never say no. I am happy to do Bollywood and even, Hollywood projects. I dream big," she says.
The casualty of all her busy work in recent days is her poetry. "I think I am a good writer. But I don't have the time to write any more. I do write occasionally. But I'd love to write more. It heals me emotionally," she adds.
Many actors, when not working, prefer to rest in the comfort of their homes. Their work involves a lot of travelling, after all. But Amala loves to travel. "I've loved travelling from when I was a child. I travel a lot on my own. It has expanded my horizons. Also, travelling for pleasure is very different from what we actors do when on work."
She’s excited about what the future holds for her. "There are some amazing scripts waiting for me. I’m also hoping to do something like Mynaa!" The only problem in Amala’s career, is the problem of plenty, and as she agrees, that’s a good problem to have.