Actress Priyanka Chopra has been juggling between Indian and American characters for a while now. The National Film Award winner says that whenever she gets emotional or angry, she becomes ‘desi and her ‘desi’ accent comes out.
The “Fashion” star has stepped into shoes of characters like Alex Parrish of the American series “Quantico” and Victoria Leeds of Hollywood film “Baywatch”. Does her personality get influenced by the on-screen characters?
“I am doing this all the time. Imagine, I was shooting for ‘Bajirao Mastani’ during the first season of ‘Quantico’. But I think it is the other way round. At times Alex gets affected by Priyanka, the personality,” Priyanka told IANS in an interview.
“There are some (long working) days when maybe… I am saying a dialogue (of Alex) in my way with an Indian accent. And then my dialect coach would come and remind me that I have to maintain Alex, an American girl. You know, whenever I get emotional or angry, I suddenly become ‘desi’ and my desi accent comes out,” she added.
The Padma Shri awardee believes that no matter how much she travels across the globe, she will remain an Indian by heart who wants to create and explore the diversity of our culture.
And she is doing it. Marathi film “Ventilator”, produced by her, won three National Films Awards this year.
Apart from “Ventilator”, she has shown interest in producing regional films in languages like Bengali, Punjabi and Bhojpuri.
Asked how she finds a script to invest in, Priyanka said: “I choose a script like an audience. But culturally, the process is quite interesting.”
“I get a translated script. Language is no barrier. But there are certain differences in the society based on regional culture. And it is very interesting to understand that closely.
“As a producer, I try to put a cultural light on the region while making a film,” said the former Miss World, whose father served the Indian Army.
During her early days, Priyanka, who was born in Jharkhand, not only traveled across India but also to international places like Massachusetts and New York in the US.
Now that she is working in the American entertainment industry, did that childhood exposure help?
“Since I was living there at a very impressionable age, which was my teenage, I was well versed with the culture. As a kid, I was very musical. So, I used to listen to a lot of American music. I still do. But I was not exposed to their entertainment industry,” she said.
Soon, she will be seen playing the antagonist – Victoria Leeds in the forthcoming Hollywood film “Baywatch”, which also stars Dwayne Johnson and Zac Efron.
Asked about the universal appeal and how relatable the character is, she said: “We have not established where Victoria is from. So that is very ambiguous. There is a scene that unveils a little back story of the character where how she faced gender discrimination as a child and later became rich and powerful out of that angst.”
So, is she from India?
“Well, such situations ‘also’ happen in the Indian society, but the story does not say that she is an Indian. I am not giving away much about the character,” she signed off.