Born and raised in New Zealand, like any other NRI. Actress Nibeditaa Paal childhood is filled with memories of enjoying Bollywood films. She is a huge admirer of Shah Rukh Khan and always wanted to be a part of that world. So, while finishing her studies in Australia, where she won Miss India Australia in 2015, Pal decided to pursue acting as a career. She moved to India and did MTV Splitsvilla and then Class of 2020.
“I think the first film I saw on the big screen was Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham as an adult. Though when I was two or three years old, I had been to theatres. But I don’t remember the movies I watched. I had also watched a lot of Hindi films on our DVD player. But the first one in a theatre was a big deal,” she recalls. Talking about how watching Bollywood movies inspired her to become an actor, Pal takes the name of Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, the first film that she fell in love with.
“This is one of my favourite films. It’s an iconic film. I don’t think there has been a film that is more Bollywood than this. Yes, Hindi films are the reason behind me becoming an actor. I love the song-dance-drama routine. As a kid, I would always sing those songs, even danced to them to entertain people. Later, while growing up, I was more engrossed in my studies. But the beauty pageant win got my attention back to showbiz,” she adds. Paal idolises Shah Rukh Khan.
Actress Nibeditaa Paal on Bollywood:
“I love watching him perform, especially the way he romances on screen. I also like Preity Zinta for being graceful, cute and bubbly and Karisma Kapoor for being elegant and beautiful. Both are brilliant performers. I wanted to be like them, be a good performer, and also look good on screen,” says the actor, who is in talks for films and web series.
Looking at the industry from the outside, Bollywood always feels like this glamorous place to be. “When you get inside you realise the amount of hard work, struggle, dedication and focus that one needs to sustain here… Once here, I realised that there’s a lot of work that I needed to do, I needed to polish myself, I wanted to be an actor. But my Hindi was horrible. So, I started taking diction classes.”
Adding further, “I also had to work on my acting, my camera presence, my body language, my appearance so much more. There have been days when I felt like I can’t do this anymore. Can’t be giving 100 auditions every month… but then you have to get back to your feet,” she shares. In love with the industry, Paal feels the best thing about Bollywood is that it makes one feel good about life. Not to forget that art is one major aspect of our society that has the power to change it for the better.
“Honestly speaking I don’t know if becoming an actor is the best decision or not, but I followed my heart and don’t regret it. I love being on sets. I believe in this art form and connect with it at many levels. Also, I enjoy doing it, that is why I’m here,” with this actress Nibeditaa Paal signs off.
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