Bollywood actress Zareen Khan has made her Bollywood debut opposite Salman Khan in his 2010 historical drama Veer. The actress went on to change her image by doing bold roles in films like Aksar 2 and Hate Story 3, but it was the Punjabi industry where the actress found more love and acceptance and she agrees with it. Eleven years later, Zareen believes she is in a different situation when it comes to her career, a place where she can make choices as per what she feels like.
“I am at the stage in my life where I will do things that interest me. There are a lot of people who have given me suggestions on who I should work or not work with and how it could make or break my market. I think we are in a phase where we have passed that, and all depends on how good the actor, concept and the project is. Instead of being in a bubble, waiting for work, I want to choose good scripts,” Zareen shares, adding that being an outsider also plays a role in this decision. “I am not from a film background that a huge line of producers and directors will be outside my house to work with me irrespective of the fact that whether my last film was a hit or a flop. Being a person not belonging to this industry, I have to be very careful with everything that I deliver. It has to be good and I have to take time to gauge a project and not just do for the heck of it, otherwise after a point, even those projects will stop being offered to me. I am just being very careful in what I present to my audiences,” she asserts.
Zareen says she likes experimenting with new things and new roles and that’s what she has tried to do in her career of these 11 years as well. “I want people to see my potential. Till lately, I was only identified as another pretty face who cannot act, without even giving me any opportunity to showcase my talent. But now, I am doing my bit, reaching out to whomever I can and I feel lucky that there are people out there who still believe in me and want to give me a chance to show my talent. I am happy to work with such people,” she said.
Talking about her upcoming line up, Zareen informs that she has a diverse portfolio waiting to be unveiled and she can’t wait for it to come out. “I have always wanted to do a comedy, and my next, Patalpani with Karanvir Vohra, is a horror comedy. So, it’s all the more exciting. I also shot for a music video with Prince Narula recently that should be released next month hopefully. It is a Hindi song sung by Jyotica Tangri. It’s a very beautiful and well-shot song,” she shares, adding heaps of praise for her co-star Prince. “I had met Prince a few times before formally at parties and events, but this was the time I actually got to work and interact with him. He is such a nice, polite and humble guy who is so easy going,” she raves.
Speaking about her Patalpani co-actor Karanvir, Zareen insists that it was fun working with him. “He is not someone that I would say I know very well, but I know his cousin really well and he actually discussed the project with me and it was an amazing concept. Me and Karanvir used to go to the same gym and I had bumped into him a couple of times, so we have been acquaintances. It was fun working with him and even our director, Raaj Ashoo, did an amazing job. We didn’t even realise when the shoot began and ended. When projects like these happen, you know it was a good time,” she shares. So, did she get to meet his new kid yet? “They are in Canada, so I couldn’t. They were supposed to come back in May but now I don’t know.”
Zareen goes on to inform that due to the current lockdown in Mumbai and the present Covid situation, a lot of her work has suffered. “I am happy that we could finish Patalpani but I have had three projects that are stuck since last year. All of them had to be shot in London but now I don’t know when would that be even possible. The cases are not subsiding in our country and that’s so unfortunate. The virus is coming closer to each of us,” she says fearfully.
On the work front, Zareen has a Punjabi film in the offing and her film Hum Bhi Akele Tum Bhi Akele, that has been waiting for a release for two years now and explores friendship on an unlikely road-trip between a lesbian, played by Zareen and a gay guy played by Anshuman Jha. “The film was already showcased in the festival circuit and it received a lot of appreciation and awards. We were planning a theatrical release in 2020 but then lockdown happened, and then the producers were planning to take the OTT route. But currently, I have no idea what they are up to. The final call is of the producer’s and I am also just waiting for it. It is a very beautiful film that needs to be seen. I am just keeping my fingers crossed that somehow it manages to get released this year,” she concludes.