Ananya Panday has no time for things most girls her age relish doing -- not even celebrate her birthday. She isn't, however, complaining. Rather, the "Student Of The Year 2" debutant, who turned 21 on October 30, is happy to have spent a working birthday this year. She says the day highlighted the most special year of her life.
"I think this has been the most special year of my life. I actually got to live my dream of becoming an actor. That's what I wanted to do my entire life," Ananya told IANS.
It has been a good year, indeed. Her debut film made her a teenybopper heartthrob on release earlier this year and she has been flooded with offers for movies, web shows and brand endorsements.
"I am blessed and lucky. I am grateful that people have liked my performance in my very first film. I hope they continue to like me in the future as well. This is just the beginning of a great, beautiful journey and I am super excited. I feel overwhelmed!," gushed actor Chunky Pandey's daughter, looking back at her journey so far.
Her first birthday after becoming an actress was all about work as usual, rather than cakes, merriment and partying. "I went for dance rehearsals of a song in 'Pati Patni Aur Woh'. It's been a working birthday but I am happy."
It was dad's advice that she work on her birthday, she reveals. "Dad told me you should be working on your birthday because if you work on your birthday, then you will be working throughout the rest of the year. I am going to follow his advice and work on every birthday of mine," she added.
On the work front, the actress will next be seen in the romantic comedy "Pati Patni Aur Woh", which is a remake of the BR Chopra classic made in 1978, having the same title. In the remake, Ananya stars alongside Kartik Aaryan and Bhumi Pednekar. The film is directed by Mudassar Aziz and slated for a December 6 release.
Opening up on the film, she shared: "I think remakes are a lot of fun. We added our own tadka to it and made it modern and relatable in the present times. Even a college student can relate to the feeling of being stuck in a relationship with someone and liking someone else, or having feelings for different people. I think it is a very universal feeling. I hope everyone relates to it. I had a lot of fun shooting the film and I hope that translates on the screen."
On her character in the movie and why she is nervous about it, Ananya said: "I am actually very nervous because I am playing a character slightly older than my age. It's very different from how people have seen me in 'Student Of The Year 2'."
The actress also expressed her love for the rom-com genre. "I have always been the kind of person who is instinctive. I always do what my gut tells me to do. I am young and fond of rom-coms and light-hearted films. That's the zone I am sticking to right now. I think I am drawn to scripts I would like to watch as an audience."
While "Pati Patni Aur Woh" is a romantic comedy, her other upcoming film "Khali Peeli" is the sort of experiment she wants to do. "Khali Peeli' is completely different. Although I love rom-coms, I also want to experiment. I am young and want to try many things even if I may make mistakes. I think it's okay to make mistakes as long as I learn something from them," she said.
The Ali Abbas Zafar-produced "Khaali Peeli" co-stars Ishan Khatter and is directed by Maqbool Khan. "We have finished shooting one schedule, and will resume in December," Ananya said about the film, scheduled for a 2020 release.
She is eager to foray the domain of web shows. "I have gotten a few (offers) and I am very interested in the digital space. I love watching digital shows. I am completely open to working in the digital (domain). I am just waiting for the right one," she revealed.