‘Both Kangana and Rangoli really love me and that’s because they give me so much of time and attention from their lives.’
Taapsee Pannu was candid when she discussed her life with Neha Dhupia on the chat show No Filter Neha Season 4.
From issues like gender inequality in the industry to Rangoli Chandel’s rants on social media to what she dislikes, Taapsee had an answer for everything.
She even describes her perfect man, and here’s a hint: He should have Hrithik Roshan’s sex appeal and Salman Khan’s net worth!
On her reaction to Rangoli Chandel
She always has a lot of things to say.
I just think that she loves me; I think both of them (Rangoli Chandel and Kangana Ranaut) really love me and that’s because they give me so much of time and attention from their lives.
I, honestly, unfortunately, don’t feel the same so I don’t give it back.
I don’t give my time and attention to them because it doesn’t matter to me in my life or in my scheme of things.
I don’t want to waste my time on someone who doesn’t matter to me, but apparently, I do matter. (That’s) why I get so much of love and attention and time. But I honestly find it so futile to instigate me like that.
If you really want to instigate me and make me say things, this is not the way.
IMAGE: Taapsee with Bhumi Pednekar in Saandh Ki Aankh.
On Rangoli’s reaction to Saand Ki Aankh
See, first of all, when I took up this film, I honestly thought that I would be appreciated for doing such a film or taking this step because generally, all actresses conventionally don’t like to become mothers or grandmothers, or don’t like to look so de-glammed in a film.
I thought that it’s going to be in my favour, but clearly not because of some people.
Whatever I do that makes an impact will attract a certain kind of attention from her is what I have realised lately.
Which is okay, it means I am making an impact.
I didn’t bother replying until I saw actresses like Neena ma’am (Neena Gupta) talking about the same thing and I really respect and love her because I have worked with her in Mulk as well, I know her.
So that’s when I decided to answer back by giving examples of the fact that how many times before has it happened that younger actors have become older like Saraansh for that matter, Mahaan for that matter.
We have such brilliant actors aging double, triple their age and that’s been okay and we have anti-ageing also happening at the same time, someone like Aamir (Khan) in 3 Idiots, so we’ve been all fine with that and enjoying and celebrating that as actors.
So why target me?
IMAGE: Taapsee in Saandh Ki Aankh. Photograph: Kind courtesy Taapsee Pannu/Instagram
On gender inequality
Rules are quite unfair, not just in our industry but maybe in every other industry.
Because we are here, we see it more.
And that’s what the fight is for, that’s what the struggle is right now, the whole issue of gender equality is that let’s make the rules equal.
I’m not asking for an edge over them, I’m asking for equality.
I’m hoping with Saand Ki Aankh and the response we are getting, it’s a step closer to that equality in one way or the other. For example, we never had a big female-led Diwali release.
I don’t know when it happened last.
It was always reserved for big heroes, the clash happened between two heroes.
You know, when we see a calendar and decide on a release date for a female-led film, we have to settle with leftovers. I’m not even kidding when I’m telling you that because I’ve done so many of them.
We just sit on the calendar and we figure out, ‘accha yeh din ke baad, yeh week khali pada hai, yahan pe kar lete hai.’
It actually happens like that, which is so disheartening because we also put equal amount of effort if not more and our stories are also beautiful. So why not get an equal chance?
Just because it’s a female-led film?
Is that reason enough for you to not come on a big date?
On Diwali, we celebrate Laxmi and you know all the goddesses that we pray to. It’s time someone takes the step.
Maybe I win, maybe I lose, but at least I will take one step to see if I can make the difference.
On the pay difference in the industry
When I’m paid only 5 to 10 percent of my heroes, of course it bothers me!
The success at the box office will make sure the next film I get paid a lot, which is slowly moving towards equalising that difference.
IMAGE: Director Sujoy Ghosh with Taapsee and Amitabh Bachchan in Badla. Photograph: Kind courtesy Taapsee Pannu/Instagram
On why Badla is called an Amitabh Bachchan film
When I do films like Badla, I had more working days or scenes so to say, than Mr Bachchan.
He was the hero of the film, I was the antagonist.
But the antagonist has more presence in the film than the protagonist.
Eventually when the film releases, they call it an Amitabh Bachchan film.
Yes, when I raise my voice and say I’ve done almost equal if not more, that’s when people recognised and started taking my name.
It’s such a male-dominated industry, they don’t even realise that I might have done more work.
Regardless of the fact that I have more scenes, it will be called an Amitabh Bachchan film and the credit will go there.
That’s why my pay will not increase as much as it will increase after Saand Ki Aankh.
It hurts me to see this disparity but I’m not going to be unreasonable and ask for an equal amount of money right away.
I would rather wait and do things to equalise the box office and then expect them to pay me and honestly, they will.
They are happily paying me because I am sensibly raising it, not just wanting to equalise it right away but balancing it with my box office success.
On her boyfriend Mathias Boe
Too much will be written and said about it, which will overtake my professional life.
On the perfect combination for her ideal man
Sex appeal: Hrithik Roshan
Sense of Humour: Akshay Kumar
Intelligence: Shah Rukh Khan
Charm: Ranveer Singh
Net worth: Salman Khan
IMAGE: Taapsee with Vicky Kaushal in Manmarziyaan.
What she dislikes
I am aggressive in my life pertaining to certain people or certain situations.
So in between my Manmarziyaan schedule when I had a little break, I came down to meet my sister and we were going out for dinner.
We were standing out for our car and there was this guy on a bike.
In a very sly way, he takes out his phone and clicks a picture, not even asking. And I saw it.
I get usually very mad when people try to do that because I feel we are public figures, not public property.
There is a difference.
This guy takes out the phone and it triggered something in me. I was like, ‘phone andar rakle nahi toh phone tod dungi‘.
I said it out and then everyone around me reacted in such a weird way.
It’s like ‘hum iske saath nahi hai‘.
And they started they scattered around.
I realised okay, I reacted way too much.
It just organically came out because I was in that aggressive zone at that time.
Sometimes people just shove their phones into our faces and come way too close for proximity to click pictures, which almost makes us feel like we don’t really have a say on what we want or what we feel or what we want to do.
I mean I love the fact that you are the ones, who make us a star or buy our tickets.
I totally respect that.
But having said that, I’m also as normal a human being as anyone else.
IMAGE: Taapsee promotes Judwaa 2 with Jacqueline Fernandez and Varun Dhawan. Photograph: Pradeep Bandekar
On her worst co-star
I’ll say two of them — Jacqueline (Fernandez) because she is so freaking hot, which I was struggling to match in Judwaa 2.
I was like I just hope I don’t put myself to shame.
The other is Vicky (Kaushal) because I was always so conscious that I should not lose out to him in the scene because he is just so good.
Who should get a new stylist?
Urvashi Rautela. She has got a great body.
I would love to see better clothes and not just the kind that show only the body.
2020 will be the year of?
It will be mine.
A QUICK GAME OF RECASTING IN THE MOVIES
IMAGE: Vicky Kaushal, Taapsee and Abhishek Bachchan take Manmarziyaan to Toronto. Photograph: Kind courtesy Taapsee Pannu/Instagram
Sonakshi Sinha in Mission Mangal:
I think I would have loved to have Radhika Apte.
Kirti Kulhari in PINK:
Taapsee in Judwaa 2:
That could have been anyone. Maybe, Disha (Pathani)?
Abhishek Bachchan in Mannmarziyan
Vicky Kaushal in Mannmarziyan
Taapsee in Mannmarziyan
Nobody could have done it better.
Diljith Dosanjh in Soorma
I think Bedi (Angad) could have done that also.
Bhumi Pednekar in Saand Ki Aankh
Anushka Sharma would have done a good job.
Akshay Kumar in Baby
Diljith Dosanjh or Angad Bedi: Better co-star?
Akshay Kumar or Vidya Balan: Better actor?
Vicky Kaushal or Abhishek Bachchan?
Vicky. He’s a better friend also and a better actor.