Deepika Padukone made her dream debut with Om Shanti Om opposite Shahrukh Khan in 2007 and how time flies. With her versatility and craftsmanship, she has paved her path to stardom.
Touted as the most reliable and phenomenal actors of the industry, she has had the opportunity to bring the most difficult characters to life be it Mastani from Bajirao Mastani, Tara Maheshwari from Tamasha or Rani Padmavati from Padmaavat, her craft proves that she is Simply the Best. The viewers still hold on to the characters she has played and relate to it on different levels. And the kind of adulation, love, and respect she has received from the audiences both on-screen and off-screen is heartwarming.
Some roles stand out from the others and have left an indelible mark on all of us. When it comes to experimenting, the original Shanti Priya girl is a known face. Deepika Padukone took us down the memory lane of her top 5 of career-defining roles, and what went into creating those characters.
Deepika has often said that it doesn't come naturally to her to dissect the process of playing these characters however at the event yesterday, she did throw some light on 5 of the most cherished characters - Veronica from cocktail, Meenakshi (Meenamma) from Chennai Express, Leela from Ram Leela, Naina Talwar from Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani and Piku from Piku.
Her career graph took a turn with Cocktail. Deepika Padukone has been basking in back to back success ever since this film. Deepika played the character of the dynamic and complicated Veronica. A strong and independent charmer, her character could make any actress envious. Veronica was a holocaust but equally vulnerable - Troubles were naturally drawn to her. Seeping into the skin of the character to the T, Deepika outshined every actor in the frame. Reminiscing over the character she said "Veronica allowed me to explore a side that I had never explored and opened me in a lot of ways. I was a very inhibited actor and I had to shed a lot of my inhibitions. It's one character I would like to flirt around with every now and then."
Chennai Express (2013)
Deepika brought the character of Meenamma to life. She channeled her comic side and stunned the audiences with her performance. However, it wasn't easy for her to enact Meenamma. Talking about this, Deepika said "I've been after Rohit (Rohit Shetty) to take Meenamma forward. If something comes along, I will happily do it". Deepika Padukone further recreated her hilarious 'Bakwaas dictionary' dialogue from Chennai Express on stage which left the audience in splits.
Goliyon ki Rasleela Ram-Leela (2013)
In the very same year, Deepika gave the performance of her lifetime by the portrayal of the character Leela. She spoke about working with Mr. Bhansali being very taxing as it gets difficult at times to match up with his impromptu ways of working. Deepika delivered the rather difficult and long dialogues with a lot of ease and finesse. This performance is considered to be her career-best and it is closest to her heart. Ram Leela is her favorite Bhansali movie of all her Bhansali projects.
Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani (2013)
In this movie, her portrayal of Naina with her girl next door charm and her innocence won everyone's hearts. Deepika enjoyed playing the transition from being the reserved girl wearing glasses to a fun-loving, glamorous girl. "I enjoyed a lot playing Naina. I saw a lot of her in me, and a lot of me in her. Naina's evolution is in some ways like my own; so portraying her transformation wasn't hard at all." Audiences could relate the most to this character and this role helped in liberating girls who wore spectacles.
This movie holds a special place in Deepika's life - her most cherished She managed to enact the short-tempered unmarried established architect with a lot of finesse. "Given a chance, I would do the movie all over again.", she gushes. "I miss Piku, I miss the experience of making the movie. We were all in a really good place when we were making the movie. We had sets that were fully functional - the house, for instance. Shoojit (the director) told us to go about our parts as if we were really living in the house and the camera would follow us. In that sense, we really "lived" the film and those moments were beautifully put together presented to the audience"
She has emerged as a true warrior woman and we can't hold onto our excitement of her upcoming projects. She will be seen in "Chhapaak' a film based on the life of acid attack survivor Laxmi Agarwal, helmed by Meghna Gulzar and as Romi Dev in Kabir Khan directorial '83 opposite Ranveer Singh. She has also turned producer for both her upcoming projects "Chhapaak" and '83.