‘I don’t feel like an outsider’

‘All my experiences in life have made me who I am today and I am extremely thankful for it.’

Nargis Fakhri plans to return to Mumbai and the movies after spending time abroad.

On her birthday on October 20, she tells Subhash K Jha, “I had taken some time off due to health issues, but was ready to get back to work when COVID hit. So that was a bummer as it delayed me getting back to films as I was super-excited to start working again.”

What are your birthday plans?

I’m currently in the USA for some work and will be flying to Dubai to celebrate my birthday with family.

After my special day, I’ll be headed to Mumbai for work and to finalise my apartment as I’m moving back to the Bay.

Looking back at your life so far, if you have to change anything, what would it be?

I would not change a thing!

All my experiences in life have made me who I am today and I am extremely thankful for it.

How have the last two years treated you? Not being able to travel must have been difficult for a nomad like you?

COVID was hard for everyone, but thank God, I was able to do some work and travel as well.

I made the best of those two years.

I was able to connect with nature more, read more, learn more recipes, learn about different subjects through online education.

Did your work suffer during the pandemic?

I think COVID hindered work for everyone.

I had taken some time off due to health issues, but was ready to get back to work when COVID hit.

So that was a bummer as it delayed me getting back to films as I was super-excited to start working again.

Now that everything is back to normal, I’m back to Mumbai and finalising some projects.

 

What are your forthcoming projects?

I have a project completed called Shiv Shastri Balboa with Anupam Kher and Neena Gupta, directed by Ajayan Venugopalan.

It’s a comedy about a retiree from India who is a big Rocky fan.

He moves to the US and ends up on an unexpected road trip through the American heartland with a undocumented house-help named Elsa.

The trip teaches them that it’s never too old to reinvent yourself.

I play Siya and she is a happy-go-lucky girl, who is half-Indian and half-American.

She is dating Cinnamon Singh, a wannabe Punjabi pop-star, who runs a gas station in the same town. Her mom doesn’t approve of their relationship and when an Indian couple (Shastri and Elsa) shows up in their town seeking help, their lives become intertwined.

During our last conversation, you mentioned a difficult situation that you were going through. What, may I ask, was that situation? Have you resolved it?

Yes, everything is great now.

It was a health issue, then COVID.

But now, everything is as amazing as it could be. I’m really super grateful.

You have always been a bit of an outsider in Bollywood. Do you still see yourself that way?

To be honest, I don’t feel like an outsider.

I realised we are all so busy and have work and family and have to travel a lot.

I love that I can keep in touch with everyone.

I’ve worked with a lot of great people and am looking forward to working with them in the future.

I love that people have been supportive and caring.

Coming back to Mumbai will be great because I’ll get to see everyone in person again.

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