Ask Celina Jaitley may wear some great outfits when she is out, but at home comfort matters the most to the lady. “People seem to think I’m sexy. Wait till they see me in pyjamas and t-shirts which have been mostly stolen from my brother,” she laughs. But Celina is only happy with the compliment. “I’m very happy about the tag. I hope to keep it for a long time to come.”
Five years ago when she walked the streets of Kolkata in her sneakers, Celina Jaitley would never have imagined that someday she would walk the streets of London with its Mayor in tow, cheered on by millions of people. But thatâ€™s what happened when she was invited to be the chief guest at the India Now Festival over there. Which speaks a lot about the journey of a girl who studied in a Hindi medium school, mastered the art of fluently conversing in English, and slowly secured her position in the film industry. â€œToday I can do a book on Hindi writer and poetess Mahadevi Varma and recite the dohas of Kabir, all in Hindi. I say, delve beyond the look to find the real person. Donâ€™t go by looks,â€ said Celina.
However, thereâ€™s no denying that she has the look. And it is that look that has got Celina her first Hollywood film, Quest of Seherzade, to be produced by the same people who made Crash and One Night With The King. Bound by a Hollywood contract, Celina could only reveal, â€œItâ€™s a great opportunity for anybody. There are two A list Hollywood stars, one senior and one junior, opposite me. Who wouldnâ€™t be excited? But itâ€™s just another film that I am doing, only the ethics are different. I would like to do films in every language, in India as well as abroad. I am very fluent in German and would love to do a German film as well.â€
Celinaâ€™s recent Bollywood film Red didnâ€™t do well but that isnâ€™t a deterrent for the actress. â€œBollywood will always remain my first priority. I will do a couple of good Bollywood films, and one Hollywood film, every year. Thatâ€™s my strategy. I shall be extremely selective about the kind of films I do here. I can sign 20 and make a lot of money, but I am not interested. I want to do work where I will be accepted and respected. Itâ€™s every actressâ€™ dream to be taken seriously. Unfortunately, people here donâ€™t look beyond your sex appeal,â€ she said.
Talking about the West, Celina said, â€œEverything out there is taken care of by my managers who have also handled the careers of Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston. So, I donâ€™t have to slog and make a base.â€ Of Aishwarya, Bipasha and Shilpa who are also trying to make a mark in the West, Celina said, â€œI am a great fan of Aishwaryaâ€™s, I am motivated by her. Shilpa has made a name for herself and Bipasha is also known there. I am very proud to be one of these women who have made India shine. Itâ€™s a very empowering thought that Indian women are leaving a mark For me, I think itâ€™s all a matter of time. If itâ€™s meant to happen, it will happen.â€
Celina Jaitley is literally going places these days. From a rocking career in Bollywood to presiding over as a chief guest at London’s India Now Festival to bagging her first mega Hollywood project, Quest of Seherzade, it’s raining mega projects for her.
And now the latest in her kitty is another important assignment – she has just been appointed as brand ambassador of Egypt.
She will help promote this ancient exotic country throughout the world by using her name, beauty and charm. “It’s a great honour and I am looking forward to take up this new challenge and assignment. I will be leaving for Egypt in the middle of this month,” she says. Another feather in her cap, is what we’ll say.
Celina Jaitley has finished the shooting of her first international project ‘Love Has No Language’. Post the shoot of the film, which took place in New Zealand, she has been stationed in the US where she is currently working on shaping her Hollywood crossover.
The actor has signed up with the noted management firm in Hollywood Brillstein-Grey Entertainment. With a talent division of around 200 clients including stars Brad Pitt, Natalie Portman, Nicolas Cage, Gwyneth Paltrow and others, the firm is helping Celina crossover to Hollywood.
Celina reveals, “I am going to take my career seriously. I will be accommodating with my new representatives. If I fail, it would only leave a negative impression. After all they are the ones representing the best in Hollywood. I’m happy to be one of them.”
Celina continues, “I was shocked to hear that some of my colleagues, who had already approached Brillstein-Grey in the past, left such a disappointing impression of Bollywood. I am excited that I was able to change their minds.”
It’s been only a few days since the news broke out about Celina being offered the role of Sophie in the film ‘Pink Panther’. Why did she opt out of it? Her agent says, “Things are heating up just fine for Celina at the moment. She is currently in the middle of a crossover campaign and after looking at the pros and cons, we advised her to pass on the project.”
Meanwhile Celina continues to select her Bollywood projects carefully after films ‘Red’, ‘Shakalaka Boom Boom’, and ‘Apna Sapna Money Money’, which have made her a popular face on the glam circuit.
Is it the war of the beauty queens now? Just a few days ago came the news that Celina Jaitley had rejected a role in the Hollywood film Pink Panther 2, and now comes the news that none other than Aishwarya Bachchan has signed the film. While Celina herself is tight-lipped about the issue, a source close to the actress says, “Celina didn’t want to sign the film because she hardly had any role in it. After doing Love Has No Language Celina is only interested in films which will showcase her talent. Celina has even signed up with an agency and contrary to rumours this is not the agency which handles Ash’s work. In fact, Celina’s already got about four offers which she is considering.” We don’t know whether the length of role has been increased now. But this round of musical chairs is interesting!
Amitabh Bachchan, Bipasha Basu, Priyanka Chopra have done it before, and now Celina Jaitley will be following in their footsteps. It’s quite an honour for an Indian celebrity when the NRI community invites them to be the Grand Marshal at the Independence Day Parade in Los Angeles, especially since it shows how much the NRI community appreciates your work. This time Celina Jaitley is all set to do the honours. “The head of the Indian Community in LA invited me to be the Grand Marshal this year, and I am looking forward to being there. It is a huge honour for me and it feels nice to be appreciated. It’s the biggest event for Indians in the States, and I’m excited about being a part of it,” says Celina who is just back to Mumbai after shooting for her Hollywood project Love Has No Language in New Zealand. She will now be off to the US to promote the film.
She’s shooting in New Zealand for her international film, and Celina Jaitley is all smiles. After all, she’s been recently voted the most ‘sexiest woman’ in India by a foreign publication. From what we gather, Celina is followed by Mallika Sherawat, Bipasha Basu, Koena Mitra and newcomer Sherlyn Chopra in the list. “I was very flattered when I heard this and I take it as a compliment. My fans have been very good to me,” says an elated Celina. In fact, like few other actors, Celina doesn’t take the ‘sexy’ badly. “It’s cool that I can wear anything and carry it off because of my face. My sex appeal lies in my face. I don’t think you need to flaunt your body, when your face says it all,” she says. Trust Celina to come up with a quotable quote.
Yes, folks. Even the much-complimented Celina Jaitley can blush beetroot red at a fresh compliment. As the rest of her cast and crew discovered when she was shooting in New Zealand recently. “A foreigner saw her at a night club where the entire crew was present, and he was so besotted with her that he took up a guitar and began singing a song for her in front of everybody. Celina was blushing beetroot red, especially since her mom was also present. When the actress didn’t respond, the man actually penned an impromptu poem and sent it to her. When a little later one of the unit people went up to him and told him she was an actress from India, and that she didn’t want to be disturbed, he apologized saying, “With such beauty, you couldn’t be anybody else.” As for Celina, she’s spending one more month in New Zealand for the shoot – and, of course, enjoying all the attention from her admirers.
Not just content with working in an international film ‘Love Has No Language’, Celina Jaitley now wishes to work in the desi version of the notable Italian film ‘Malena’ (2000), which had actor Monica Bellucci as protagonist.
Directed by Giuseppe Tornatore, the film was nominated for the Oscars. Here, Celina discloses the impact that the film has made on her.
You seem to be very impressed with the film ‘Malena’
Ever since I saw it, I can’t get over it. I was lucky to lay my hands on the film’s DVD. The script’s beauty lies in the fact that it makes you think about your very existence. I must have seen it multiple times. Yet, I don’t mind viewing it again.
What’s so special about the film?
The film is about Malena-a young woman (played by Monica Bellucci), who is trapped in a Sicilian town while her husband is away serving in the World War. She is so lonely, that she becomes an easy target of lust for most men in the town. She is raped, brutalised and used! In this situation comes a young boy, who watches her go through all the humiliation. The relationship, which the two share, is heart-warming. The boy observes her from a distance and even tries to gain courage from the way she faces adversities.
What do you think of actor Monica Bellucci?
Monica has brought out the pathos very well. I couldn’t stop crying watching her. Her innocence and vulnerability make her stand out as an actor.
You seem to be very inspired by her
I feel challenged. I wish I could be part of such a film. I wish some filmmaker makes this film in Bollywood. I would be more than happy to play this role. It would be the right opportunity to relive a great role. Such stories deserve to be told in all parts of the world, especially in Bollywood, which has a huge market.