I wouldn’t want to change anything: Raveena Tandon

“Time flies, doesn’t it?” laughs Raveena Tandon. It’s been 25 years since she entered the film industry with Patthar ke Phool. “When someone tells me with awe that I’ve been around for 25 years, I do feel ‘wow, yes’ but when I sit down to think about it, it’s not a big deal at all. All through, we keep hearing that the shelf life of an actress is short. Things are changing, to an extent. Filmmakers and the audience have opened up to new ideas. Married actresses don’t go out of work,” she says.

Raveena Tandon won the National Award for her titular role in

The 25 years have been punctuated with a couple of breaks, when she stepped back for personal reasons. “I needed those breaks at that time to put things in perspective. I have no regret whatsoever for the choices I made, both in selection of films and for taking a break. I wouldn’t want to change anything,” she reasons.

In the recent years, she’s been seen more on television than on the big screen. Anurag Kashyap’s Bombay Velvet earned her a fair amount of appreciation for her brief role. She looks back warmly, “It’s flattering when people come up and tell me they watched the film twice just for me. I wish the film had done well.” There are rumours that she’s part of Anurag Kashyap’s next. “Not true, I don’t even know what film he is making. I am at a stage where I am not eager to see myself on screen every other Friday. Every second day I am offered a script to read. But a project has to be really good for me to take it up. Otherwise I am happy spending time with my family,” she quips.

Raveena is looking forward to Shab, directed by Onir, co-starring Sanjay Suri. “Onir and Sanjay are my long-time friends, since the days of Daman. Onir had a story I couldn’t say no to,” she says.

Films like Daman, Shool and Satta were part of her repertoire but that couldn’t shake off the label of ‘mast mast girl’ or the memories of ‘Tip tip barsa paani’.

“Those labels worked for me, I wouldn’t shy away from it. If I did a Ghulam-e-Mustafa, I also did Andaz Apna Apna. I did Daman and a comedy like Bade Miya Chote Miya. There was a Dulhe Raja in contrast with Satta. I could strike a balance. These days, the line between commercial and offbeat cinema is blurring, which gives more scope for an actor,” she says.

Now, she’s looking forward to a dance reality show where she’ll be judging with her co-star Govinda. “We both love dancing, so it should be a fun experience to judge,” she sums up.