Home / Industry / Media /  I rely on my gut instinct: Deepika Padukone

When she made her Hindi film debut nine years ago, very few people could have imagined that Deepika Padukone would emerge as the superstar she is today.

Several hits and misses later, she has not just battled and overcome the perception of being just another attractive model but truly come into her own as an actor, public figure and person. Currently filming her Hollywood debut xXx: The Return of Xander Cage, Padukone spoke from the Dominican Republic about her journey and why she doesn’t mind the pitfalls that come with stardom.

Edited excerpts:

You have had a spectacular run, especially in the last couple of years. Do you have a specific criterion when choosing a script or role?

In the way that my performances have come through or the way my films have done, people probably feel there is something specific that has changed in how I’m looking at a script.

But honestly, it’s always been my gut instinct. That’s the only thing I rely on… So many decisions in life are not driven by one thing but by many circumstances and life experiences. So, it’s a collection of thoughts and feelings and emotions.

I think it’s the same for my movies as well.

Do you ever look back at the time your choices weren’t really paying off, in the initial phase of your career?

Of course, I do. At that time, you don’t give it much thought, you might not get the time or the opportunity to. But when things are going good, I’m definitely someone who will look back at the journey…every good experience teaches you something but so do the bad ones. All of it makes you wiser and richer—not necessarily in terms of money but as a person. There’s so much to learn from your failures, mistakes and things that haven’t gone the way that you’d have liked them to. And I think it all adds up to making you a better human being.

Why did you take up this Hollywood project now when you’re at the peak of your Hindi film career?

Because I don’t look at it as a separate thing. I look at it as a whole, as one long journey. I’m often asked if I would have to balance careers but honestly, the way I decided to do xXx is the same way I decided to do a Piku or a Bajirao Mastani or a Tamasha, or a Cocktail, for that matter.

You’ve mentioned the wonderful parts of being a star. Are there unflattering things that come with it that disturb or unsettle you?

No, not at all. I think I have learnt to take all of it in my stride, absorb the positives and block off any kind of negativity. Of course, there are certain things that come with the territory. No matter how much you prepare yourself before coming into the industry, when you actually experience it, it just takes a lot of strength to deal with it.

And I often worry about the people around me, but eventually, I think you come around and realize that there’s so much more that you get. So much love and appreciation, and, most importantly, you’re in a business where the work that you do affects people’s lives.

Certain movies can change people’s lives forever. That is such a powerful place to be in.

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