Priyanka Chopra is having an amazing year. Besides bagging awards for Bajirao Mastaani (2015) in India, she is making giant strides in the West — not only is her popular American TV show Quantico (now in its second season), but she has also bagged a major role as the antagonist in a big-budget mainstream film like Baywatch! The actor knows when to count her blessings. She says, “I have had an amazing acceptance in America. People have been incredibly welcoming to me — whether it’s the film industry, the press, media or the audience. Every airport I go to — that’s the only place I get to go outside; my exposure to the world is the airport — I get so many people calling me and saying, ‘Alex (her name in Quantico), we love the show.’ They speak to me no matter which country I go to. It has been an incredible experience.”
Priyanka adds that “It’s just the beginning,” not just for herself, but for Indian talent as a whole. The actor says, “I truly believe that everything that has happened to me is just about one, or maybe two, per cent of the respect Indian actors deserve in the world. We have always been boxed into thinking we can do only certain things, but we are worth so much more. I want to be able to open up gateways for Indian talent. They should get opportunities by coming there and I hope they are even more successful than I am.”
Pragmatic as ever, Priyanka acknowledges that “it’s going to take time,” but is optimistic about the future. Just don’t ask her what shape it has.
Priyanka laughs, “I ever never planned my career; I am instinctive. I consider myself as an artist, not an actor. So whenever opportunity comes my way, I take it on if I like it. So I don’t know what is next. I know it will be something within creativity. But if you think I surprise you, I surprise myself also!”