A Gem of a girl!
We caught up with Priya Anand a.k.a Ratna Prabha of Leader fame after an exclusive shoot for MAA Stars.It’s hard to miss the twinkle in her eyes& her mischievous smile. Above all else, her clobbering enthusiasm just rubs off on you. Here’s what she had to say…
Good things come in small packages.You’re certainly proving it…
Dude, look at what is packed in this petite frame. It’s all about the attitude, not the ‘altitude’. [winks]
How was it working with Rana & Ram?
Rana is the more serious type of guy. He’s so quiet all the time. I used to be the in-house prankster on the sets of Leader while it was the total opposite on the sets of RRKK. Ram looks innocent but he is like a mischievous little boy who is waiting to play pranks on you. But both of them are so committed during the shoot. I’ve learnt a lot about professionalism from both of them. It was a wonderful learning experience especially since I was shooting for both movies at once. The diversity in the themes was great to experience.
How are you dealing with all the attention coming your way?
Nothing has really changed per se. I still have the same friends. I do the same things I used to do before. I travel by autorickshaw, eat out at the same Idli bandi, hang out at Necklace Road, gorge on Biryani at Paradise & Shadab. I really wouldn’t have it any other way.
You’ve acted in two Tamil movies before Leader. How did you get into Tamil movies in the first place?
I live with my grandparents in Chennai, there I used to model a lot and slowly started acting in TV commercials, that’s when I was spotted by my director.
You can speak Tamil &Telugu quite well. And you dub your own voice. That’s winning you lots of brownie points.
That’s the thing about Sekhar Kammula. He was very particular that he wanted a Telugu girl for the role of Ratna Prabha. And I can speak Telugu well. So He & Rana insisted that I dub my own voice. It was really their discretion. I just followed my director’s advice.
There’s a bit of Marathi blood in there, as well I’m told. What else? You are quite the linguist. How many languages do you know?
Well, start counting – English, Telugu, Tamil, Bengali, Hindi & Spanish, 6 in all.
Take us down memory lane.Where did you grow up?
My mom’s from Chennai & dad’s from Hyderabad. So I grew up in both places. I moved to the US to study Communications &Journalism at the University of Albany.After completing my education, I moved back to Chennai to be with my grandparents.
Has being a Telugu girl in the industry made things easy or difficult for you?
Knowing the language you are acting in definitely makes it easy. Audiences want to see their kind. They want to relate to the characters.The actress should look native to the culture. And that’s where I come in I guess. My South Indian looks definitely help me.Directors are confident that I understand my scene better & react to it.
How was it working with Sekhar Kammula in Leader?
He’s more than a director to me. He is my mentor. He has so much fame & fortune yet he is so humble & real. No airs at all. I admire his outlook towards life.
What do you actually think of politics?
Oh spare me, it’s just not my cup of tea. But yes, working in Leader has brought out a different perspective. We would all love to see an Arjun Prasad-like politician but I don’t think it is practical.
What is your dream role?
I don’t really have a dream role as such but Ratna Prabha will always remain close to my heart. I’m just thankful for all the roles coming my way.
What has been your best experience in the industry so far?
The audience’s reaction to me has been so encouraging. I love spending time with my fans.
The Times of Priya
Are you single or hitched?
Am married to my work
Your idea of a Perfect guy…
Passionate, true to himself, grounded, close to family, should be able to keep me entertained & hold my attention
Current Crushes: Nobody
What’s your ideal date?
No fuss, no formal stuff, just surprise me. It’s as simple as that!
Craziest thing ever done – I can never mention it. It’s too embarrassing
Three things you are never without – Phone, Wallet, Chapstick
One thing no one knows about you – am scaredof snakes
When alone – I watch a movie
If you were a pizza topping – Chilis/jalapenos
If you were a tattoo on a man’s body,what would it be, and where?My name on his forearm
Pet – I love dogs, but was never allowed to have pets
Crush – Chiranjeevi in Gharana Mogudu
Kiss – Pass[grins]
Car – Yet to buy one. Family owned cars don’t count, right?
Date – never been on a date in my life!
Make people comfortable
Can’t think past movies
Snap very easily