The term Pan-Indian cinema is doing the rounds in media circles and on social media these days, thanks to the phenomenal success of RRR, KGF: Chapter 2 and Pushpa: The Rise. Actors like Allu Arjun, Yash, Ram Charan and Jr NTR are being termed ‘pan-Indian stars’ but this phenomenon of actors doing well in both the South and North film circuits is not new. Actors have seamlessly traversed multiple Indian film industries since time immemorial and Rakul Preet Singh is one of them. The actress made her cinema debut with a Kannada movie and has done Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam films. She was already a big star down South when she made her Bollywood debut with Yaariyan in 2014.
Rakul Preet Singh on the term ‘pan-India’
Ask Rakul what she thinks of the term ‘pan-Indian’ and she says: “Yes, sometimes I do feel like okay this word has been coined now but I’ve been doing that for a while. Nevertheless, that’s not a thought that’s actively always crossing my mind. I think I’ve had the best of both worlds, you know? I’ve worked with everyone in Telugu and had the best experience and I always say that who I am today is attributed to Telugu cinema and now this is a new field for me, a new space for me, that I’m enjoying as well. But like I said, pan-India is just a word and people have been watching films for a while, and I just feel it’s in the last two or three years that it’s been highlighted more where its great social media has some power.”
Rakul Preet Singh on her idea of love
Rakul recently released her new music video which is titled Mashooka. It’s a party anthem that is an instant ear-worm. Of course, as one would guess by the name, it is kind of a romantic number as well. It’s bubbly, fun and joyful – is Rakul’s idea of love the same?
“I think my idea of love is extremely romantic but it’s also practical. It’s not a film romance because life is not a movie. But it’s fun, so if you want to call it bubbly you can. I choose to express, whatever I feel, keeping in mind the practicality of life. And yes, I’m a strong believer of love and I believe in enjoying every small moment that comes with it,” she says, adding: “I believe in the idea of love, I believe in love. And I think that comes from the fact that I’ve seen my parents a certain way ever since I’ve grown up – with a lot of respect towards each other and a lot of commitment towards each other. And to me, love is unconditional. It cannot be stressful, and if it is you are in the wrong relationship. I think it has to just flow and accept you as you are. You accept the other person as the other person is too. And two people come together to make each other’s life better, but not suck out energy from it. So my idea of love is effortless.”
Rakul Preet Singh on her role in Chhatriwali
The actress will next be seen in Chhatriwali, a social-comedy film where she is playing the role of a condom-tester. It’s not a role that a mainstream actress would have accepted back in the day but times have changed and so have the roles being offered to women.
“Well Chhatriwali . . . when you watch the film, you’ll know that it is a very important subject and dealt with in a very sensitive and light-hearted manner. I just feel that today, we’re talking about so many issues, population control and there are bigger issues because of that and it is important to educate people in the right way. We’re not trying to be preachy, but when you see the film you’ll know why I happened to say yes to it. All I can say is that it is a film that you can watch with your parents. Not one dialogue will make you feel cringe, not one scene will make you feel that way. It is a family film that will bring a smile to your faces,” she says.
Rakul Preet Singh on safe sex and sex education in schools
Even though times have changed, a majority of the Indian populace still tends to shirk away from talking about condoms and sex. Is Rakul Preet Singh open about her opinions regarding safe sex and good sexual health?
“Absolutely, I think these are things, unfortunately, because of a taboo that are not spoken about. But I think every school should educate the kids about safe sex and good sexual health. You know, we very vaguely touch the surface of HIV, or AIDS or the other STDs. But, in general, it is as normal as it needs to be and it’s as important to know about the dos and don’ts as it is about anything else,” she says.
We do wish more public personalities were as candid as Rakul Preet Singh, for sure.