Tuesday, May 17, 2016
KANGANA is fighting the media war today like a dude. A brilliant actor with a volatile mind, or a victim of masculine insecurities? One thing is for sure: Ranaut is not just another actor, happy to run around trees and play second fiddle to her male co-stars.
In misty Bhambla, a sleepy town tucked away at the edge of Mandi district in Himachal Pradesh, some 165 km from Manali, locals remember Ranaut as a simple girl who always had a proclivity towards acting.
It is almost unthinkable for any girl to leave the village and work outside. By all indications, Ranaut's folks didn't readily acquiesce to her career choice. "After some initial reservations, her parents decided to back her.
Over at the Hill View Public School, where Ranaut studied up till Class X, she is a revered idol. Enveloped by vast stretches of grasslands, this four-room school is where the actor first took to the stage. Teachers say she could perform qawallis and recite Sanskrit shlokas with little preparation. And, despite the many distractions, Ranaut's studies never suffered. She topped her school in Classes VIII and X. Even while in her school uniform, Ranaut would do something that would make her stand out. She was carefree and extremely ambitious, traits that you do not find in a lot of students.
Ranaut often mentions that the acting bug spawned in her after a workshop with theatre man Gaur, but her journey to the acme of the Hindi film industry, and her transition from diffident schoolgirl to charming fashionista, began right here. Soon after moving to Chandigarh in Class XI, Ranaut's obdurate desire to enter showbiz got the better of her father's wish to see her become a doctor. While Ranaut was studious, films was where she always wanted to make her mark. She was an average student, not overly brilliant, but extremely hard working in whatever she pursued. It was a failed unit test during the last year of school that made Ranaut alter her career path.
As school drew to a close, an ardent passion was taking the shape of a dangerous obsession. A fond rice eater, she began skipping meals and stuck to salad and soup for dinner. To improve her English, encumbered with a thick Himachali accent, Ranaut started taking extra classes. Till late into her teens, Ranaut's unimpressive command over the English language bothered her. She often told me how she wanted to remove all hurdles that could possibly jeopardise her chances in the entertainment business. In Class XII, she bought a fulgent blue-coloured off-shoulder dress that left students and teachers stunned. Later that year, Ranaut, dressed in a henna green sari, was adjudged "Miss DAV" at the school farewell. Determination was the key. Just look at the way she speaks now.
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