Raveena is busy working her second innings in the glamour industry, and the biggest change she feels is looking the part 24 x 7. Decking up for morning flights is not her cup of tea, she grumbles. “Yes, the paparazzi is very active these days, and so we actors have to put our best foot forward at all times. But I dislike wearing make-up for early morning flights,” she says.
Her next venture is Shab with director Onir, in which she plays a dark character. “I had never played a negative role and so wanted to experiment with it when Onir offered it to me. We have been planning to do a film for the past few years. Post my sabbatical, he came up to me with Shab, I found it challenging, and so accepted it,” explains Raveena.
On being choosy Raveena says, “I have just done one or two films recently. I am often asked why I am not doing more films. The answer is simple. I should get interesting scripts that challenge me as an actor for me to say yes.”
Talking about Maatr, (a thriller) she says, “This was the right time for a film like Maatr to have released. We all are responsible for everything that is wrong in the world. We must raise our voices for all the issues, particularly those that plague women. The sad truth is that we are getting used to hearing about such heinous crimes that it is appalling,” adding that she had pondered for a long time on making a movie on Kalpana Chawla, elaborating, “She (Kalpana) has done our country proud. Her life story is such an incredible journey which can inspire thousands and hence deserves to be told.” Raveena said talking about her pet project.
“I was offered Gulab Gang, but I found the film too commercial. At this juncture of my life, I want to be a part of films based on real stories, which make a difference. There were some comedy film offers too, but I didn’t find them too fascinating,” she added, talking about the movies she would like to do.
On her second innings, Raveena is all smiles. “God has been kind, and I am still offered good work. I am surrounded by the love of my family, friends, fans and well-wishers. Even after a sabbatical, I feel humbled to get films worth my while. I am glad to be a part of this industry and do what I do best.”
Raveena recalled a time back in the 90s when she worked in 30 films at a time. “The stories of the films would be the same. A rich girl would fall for a poor boy and would have two permanent scenes in the movie. One, where she is shouting for help against the villains, and two when she argues with her father who disapproves of her relationship. The storylines were the same with one item song, and yes, I did those films. But today, cinema has evolved.”
Going further, she recalls, “I have done content-driven films in this comeback, but I am itching to do some good comedy. A clean film that has you laughing from start to finish,” she says.
Ask her about the restrictions on heroines wearing certain clothes, and she retorts, ‘It’s my choice. Why must anyone comment or choose what I can and cannot wear? Why are no actors pulled up for their wardrobe choices? Why are women always at the receiving end? There should be no distinction whatsoever. Live and let live,” Raveena stresses.
And what about an autobiographical foray, we wonder. “Yes, I have been approached to write my story, but there is a problem. If I do it, I will be brutally honest. And I am sure it will not go down too well with many from our film fraternity, and they may need some hiding spots,” she grins.
Raveena is active on Twitter. “Yes, I had tweeted to PM Modi, foreign minister Sushma Swaraj and the home minister Rajnath Singh asking if we would just sit down and watch Jadhav dying. I raise my voice on relevant issues on social media. I believe everyone has the right to put forth their own opinion without politicising it,” Raveena concludes.