her of her famous swimsuit magazine covers and she gets
upset. "I was only sixteen then, today my priorities
have changed", she protests. The shift in priorities
is in more ways than one. Lisa was skeptical about doing
films at one time. Twice before she had signed films
and backed out. Apparently she is, or so she claims
right now,third time certain. She's shooting for Vikram
Bhatt's new film in which she plays a lawyer. Covered
from head to toe, she's enjoying this new avatar immensely
while perfecting the make-up on her otherwise flawless
face. She speaks candidly about her much-delayed foray
have been offered so many bigger films earlier. What
made you decide on Vikram Bhatt's films?
I never had any intentions of doing films. But I guess
things changed for me, it was a combination of many
factors that made me take up the film. Vikram is a great
director, he's young and we communicate on the same
level. For me that's important. The entire unit is very
young and enthused and the story is very interesting.
But still, at the end of the day, it was just instincts
that led me to do this film. There were many bigger
films with top heroes offered to me, but I must say
I'm very happy and much more comfortable as I feel that
this is a right choice. Aftab is doing well and he's
very enthusiastic and I feel much more relaxed working
with someone new as compared to an established hero
now that films have become a full-time career for you
is it bye to TV and modeling?
It's not that I'm jumping into the whole arena now.
It's very difficult to say whether I will or will not
do more films at this stage in my life. I don't want
to commit myself either way. But I have no intentions
of jumping into the mainstream film world fully because
I'm very happy with my other advertisement, television
and modeling work. Films are a very time-consuming profession,
so I don't think I will get into them full time. I will
continue doing everything else that I am already doing.
I don't see myself as a full-time film actress.
Does seeing models like Aishwarya, Sushmita and Namrata
doing well in films comfort you?
I'm very happy for them but none of them are examples
or motivations for me. My motivations have always come
from within me. Just because they are successful is
not reason enough for me to join films.
Vikram Bhatt insist that you take some sort of formal
training as an actress?
No, not at all. But I had already done all sorts of
classes much before. When I was doing Sanjay Dutt's
film a couple of years back, I had already attended
acting, dancing and action classes then. And Vikram
did not see it necessary for the role. I do everything
my director tells me to do because I have complete faith
in Vikram. Because I'm completely new to the line, I
rely totally on my director and the unit around me.
are you going to do about your English accent?
I will definitely work on my accent but right now I
am only concentrating on the filming. See, I do speak
Hindi, I understand the language perfectly, so it's
not such a big problem. My accent is slightly anglicised
but it's not an issue at this stage of the film. Right
now, I have to perform, be good at my expressions in
the scenes. So, I'm coping pretty well. I don't have
a major language problem at all. You have to understand,
I'm also a first-time actress. Every aspect of filmmaking
is new to me.
today, your Gladrags pin-up girl image is so strong
in people's minds. How does this feel?
That is there but then isn't being glamorous a requirement
for any Hindi film actress as well? I definitely think
so and I also strongly believe that I'm not only glamorous
but I also have brains. My role in Vikram Bhatt's film
is not externally glamorous so I can't say what people
feel about me. But I've been receiving all kinds of
roles to perform as an actress in films.
the sex-symbol tag ever get to you?
Do you really think that's all I'm known for? I think
I've moved beyond it and I've managed to evolve and
now I am accepted as a versatile model who can deliver
the goods. That's my victory. I've broken the stereotype
image in people's minds.
always interspaced your professional life with long
personal absences. Do you think this sort of erratic
temperament will work in Hindi films?
I did it out of will. Out of choice, I took a year off
from work at my peak as a model. I went to Canada even
while tons of offers were pouring in. I could have made
a lot of money, but I didn't. I refused all work for
one full year. Frankly, I've always played by my own
rules. There has been no set pattern in anything I've
done so far in my life. My instincts and happiness have
always ruled my mind and my decisions. I've always gone
by my gut feeling and till date, I've not regretted
anything. But right now I'm at a stage where I'm enjoying
my work. For the very first time, I'm treating my work
seriously as a profession, which I never did earlier.
Then I was too young and immature and I wasn't even
settled in India. Now, I've finally taken a decision.
I live here and my complete life is here now. My parents
have come here from Canada and they live with me. And
also, I've decided to take my work seriously. My choice
to work again is entirely mine and I've been lucky enough
to stay on top the whole time. I feel that's happened
because I've always re-invented myself with changing
times and because I'm not over-exposed.
Who among the current generation of actors do you admire?
I watch only good films' because there are a whole lot
of crappy Hindi movies made. I liked Aishwarya in Hum
Dil De Chuke Sanam, I've always liked Kajol's performances.
I like Ajay Devgun as an actor and I admire Aamir Khan's
work a lot. I saw Kaho Na Pyar Hai and honestly I think
it was just OK. Nothing to write home about. Films like
Split Wide Open and Hyderabad Blues suit my sensibilities
much more. I'd like to work in such movies too.
has the industry in general reacted to you?
I've always been detached from the film industry so
I haven't really looked around for reactions and opinions.
I'm very happy with the work I'm doing that's it.
You don't like to play by the rules but that is the
only one way for an actress to succeed.
But I don't want to be a Hindi film actress. And I don't
think I am a Hindi film actress. I am doing only two
films and that does not make me full time film actress.
I am not looking for a long term career here. I'm not
even looking at competing with Aishwarya or Sushmita.
Films are one of the many things I'm doing.