I feel lucky to have been able to work in diverse industries – Aditi Rao Hydari’s Interview – Bgs Raw

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Aditi Rao Hydari deserves all the attention she gets; this star has arrived and how! Basking in the success of her latest Tamil release, Psycho, Rao Hydari offered us an unfiltered view of industry insights and her life beyond the silver screen. She is vocal about her struggles, but what sets her apart is her empathy and respect for her contemporaries and their hard work. “It’s not easy for anybody. People who are from the film background have their own struggles. The point is to take those struggles as challenges and overcome them, happily,” she says. While on the way to a meeting, the actor opens up about her idea of films, feelings, and freedom.

Q. You have worked in the Hindi, Tamil, and Telugu film industries. How enriching and different has each experience been for you?
I feel lucky to have been able to work in diverse industries. But I believe that we are one film industry— the Indian film industry. We are lucky to have different voices, cultures, ethnicities, and the setups that make up the industry. People often ask me about the difference, but cinema is about feelings that do not have a language or boundaries. The challenge of working with such talented filmmakers fuels me. It might be difficult to speak in a language you don’t know, but ultimately, the emotion has to shine through. I am happy to work extra for it.

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Q. You have collaborated with directors like Sanjay Leela Bhansali, Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, and Abhishek Kapoor. Do you still feel that consistent lead roles don’t come by?
I’d prefer it if the media refrained from using words like ‘lead’. However, I enjoy working with directors who challenge me, are fun to work with, lead the team, and whose passion is to create something new. At the end of the day, it is important to play a role that has a character. Whether I am in every frame of the film or there only for a few minutes, the audience should be able to take me with them in their hearts. I try to be fearless while making choices. I follow my heart and instincts when choosing a film.

Q. Tell us something about your recent release, Psycho. How does the project stand out?
It was a challenging project. I had seen some of Mysskin sir’s films but didn’t know him. He has a strong vision, which lends a certain conviction to his style of filmmaking. Naturally, he has a loyal fan base. I had never done a film like Psycho earlier. Mysskin sir says he loves ugliness, dirt, and Goth. Doing the film was different, emotionally. When I was on the set, I was dealing with it at a basic, emotional level. Only when the film released, did I realise how deep and impactful it is.

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That it did well and was loved by the audiences and critics alike, was wonderful. It’s running strong in its seventh week, with full houses. As an actor, I feel good.

Q. You have always been open about your struggles in the industry. Do you think that over the years things have changed for you?
My policy is to take it one step at a time, and move forward. The size of the step does not matter. As long as I am able to surprise people and they are interested in me, I am happy. I’m often told that I am underrated; I take it as a compliment because that means I can do more. To me, success is when people you respect and admire think of you as their vision, repeatedly. Fame and money are add-ons. It also helps that I don’t have a negative bone in my body. Not even one inch of me is resentful of the fact that I don’t have backing in the industry. And it’s not to say that actors from a film background don’t face struggles. I choose to overcome my struggles with a smile on my face, always happy and childlike. My directors have always had my back; they’ve nurtured and protected me.

Q. What advice you would like to give someone trying to make big in this industry?
Firstly, never come in with that ‘I’m an outsider’ attitude. Everyone will face challenges. You just have to keep pushing yourself. An artist never has it easy. There’s a fine line between being positive and happy, or mildly dissatisfied for a push. Also, ask yourself why you want to do it? Is it because being in front of the camera makes you happy, or are you in it for the perishables—fame and money? If you find joy in being on set, playing different roles, go for it. The industry is competitive and can be hard on you, so keep the excitement alive. Be your authentic self; you shine when you are authentic.

Q. The film industry is a tricky space to be in. What keeps you grounded?
It is my attitude, and the way I have been brought up. My family, friends, and the people I love to keep me grounded.

Also, I appreciate people who tell me the truth; I heed their advice and keep them close. It’s important for artists to listen and be open to accepting fears and harsh truths. I believe the art is greater than me and I respect the people who create it. I don’t put myself first.

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Q. You have always been a private person. Have the low moments ever taken a toll on your work? How do you cope?
There are days when I feel unhappy. Fortunately, those moments have not been long. Perhaps, my childlike temperament helps in moments like these. It helps me to stay real and happy. Moreover, I am the only one who can tell myself that sadness is temporary. I am a transparent person. I wear my heart of my sleeve. Several people might call this weak or soft; vulnerability is my biggest strength. I take it in my stride. I am not afraid to show my feelings. All of us should be comfortable with the way we express our feelings. I tend to cry, and I’ve realized that’s the best way for me to vent. I then talk about it and move on. I also indulge in singing, dancing, and yoga.

Q. You have always been aware and vocal about issues concerning our society. Where does that strength stem from?
If I feel strongly about an issue/situation, I have to voice it, and stand up with the people. Until we stand up, there isn’t going to be any change. We have to lead by example, and live up to it. While this can sometimes backfire, I do not regret presenting my views on important issues. I do it with pure intentions. If people want to speak ill of me, it’s their choice. I can only control what I do or say. I like to live fearlessly and speak my mind.

Q. You co-own a domestic tennis team. Does this initiative come from a personal interest in the sport?
Tennis is a much-loved sport but it doesn’t have a mass appeal in our country. My father played tennis; he wanted me to play the sport, but I never listened to him. My great grandmother, Lady Hydari, had a club in Hyderabad called Lady Hydari Club. She encouraged women to come and play tennis there, and it stands even today. If my great grandmother could do it that many years ago, I feel like I should do it now.

Q. Do you think the idea of conventional beauty is pressurizing? Do you think have we evolved?
The conventional idea of beauty is gradually changing and evolving. People are taking the required steps in the right direction. In fact, I believe, brands and people are far more conscious about what they put out in society. The notion has become way more inclusive today.

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Q. If you have to choose between money and creative satisfaction, what would it be?
I do what I do for creative satisfaction, and have never thought twice about it. Like I said, the money is an added bonus! Creative satisfaction and results last a lifetime; beyond your years. However, credibility and respect cannot be bought. They have to be earned with your choices and your attitude.

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Q. You are also an art and culture enthusiast. Tell us more about that side of your personality.
I have grown up in a culturally-rich environment, surrounded by artistes, and I have been dancing since I was five. My mother sings—I used to wake up to the sound of the tanpura and she doing her riyaaz before I moved to Mumbai; it’s been a part of my life. Cinema is also a beautiful mix of all art forms, and that’s why I enjoy it.

Q. Tell us about your fitness routine and the diet you follow.
I don’t follow a particular diet because I think food is good for the soul and your soul, should always be happy. I just try not to eat sugar, gluten, and dairy. I am not regular with workout sessions but when I do, I go for functional training, yoga, and dancing. I find it difficult to follow a routine with a tight work schedule. I also credit my genes!

Q. What’s on your professional wish list?
I have a long wish list of directors. I have worked with some of the best and would like to work with them again. But real success is about having the freedom to make a choice to work on your own terms and conditions. I think this is my time to put all my energy into work to get to a stage where I can find a good balance between work and personal life.

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Source: This interview was gathered from the Femina magazine, all the images used are belog to  femina magazine, if you want to read more from insides you can also purchase their physical copy if any store is opened during this lockdown or we recommend you to buy a digital copy from there website.

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