Jacqueline Fernandez justifies her breakup with the Prince of Bahrain and newfound affection for director Sajid Khan
How did Bollywood happen?
It just did. After being crowned Miss Sri Lanka, I was doing a few fashion shows in India. That’s when I was offered Aladin and Jaane Kahaan Se Aayi Hai.
And when the two films fell flat…
People are very hard on you if your film doesn’t do well. It was a very frustrating time for me, until Sajid Khan called and asked me to dance to the Apni Toh Jaise Taise number in Housefull.
I knew that Sajid’s film was a big ticket and the Laawaris song was equally big. But still, I didn’t get any good offers. In fact, I decided to pack my bags and go back to Sri Lanka. And then suddenly, Mukesh Bhatt called up.
You must have been happy with the Murder 2 offer.
No. In fact, many people advised me not to accept it. They said I’ll get stuck with the hot and sexy image and inevitably there would be comparisons drawn between Mallika Sherawat (who played the female lead in Murder) and me.
One fine morning, I got up and decided to go with my own gut and instinct. I knew that I was heading for something that would either make or break me. I said, chalo let me take the risk.
People feel you looked sexier than Mallika
(Laughs) That’s an inevitable but unfair comparison. I really love Mallika for the way she leads her life on her own terms and is not apologetic about it.
Has the industry’s perception of you changed after Murder 2?
Yeah. People have accepted me. And I must add here that I am not in real life what Priya was in Murder 2. I am not free with my body. I do wear shorts or glam outfits but that’s only for my work. At heart I’m still a convent school girl.
So, where would you draw the line while exposing?
You have to understand the film, its maker and its target audience. I’ll put my foot down if the character is being displayed in a vulgar manner. I don’t want to do anything that is meant to only titillate. If it is meant to empathise or sympathise with the character I am playing, I am okay. I don’t have any dos and don’ts.
Were your parents apprehensive about you making a career in Bollywood?
They were. It’s an industry where people can take advantage of you.
Moving on… you were apparently dating some Prince of Bahrain…
I don’t like talking about it.
Why do you think actors get into new relationships even before they are out of their previous one?
It’s not just with actors. It is happening in every sphere of life. Let’s put it this way. It is natural to fall in love and out of love as well.
So have you fallen in love with Sajid Khan…
I can’t discuss that. I am a very shy person. I won’t be able to talk about my personal status with even my sister or mom. At this point, I would just say that Sajid and I respect each other a lot.
Reportedly, you made Sajid meet your dad in Delhi…
Why would I make him meet my dad in Delhi?
So tell us what you like about Sajid: Do you find him handsome? Or is it that you like his sense of humour?
(Laughs) I am not replying to this one.
He is madly in love with you…
(Looks at her nails, blushes and goes silent)
Let’s not end with this silence. For the record, which projects are you currently working on?
Housefull 2 and Raaz 3. TOI