Ever since Zareen Khan made her big Bollywood debut opposite Salman Khan in their 2010 film Veer, the actress has been subjected to the industry's perception of a typical heroine. People were quick to notice that she has a striking resemblance with Katrina Kaif. But soon, the focus shifted to her body type. She has now claimed that she was actually told to put on weight for her role in Veer by experienced people who gave her instructions.
"Everybody was just talking about my weight and I couldn't understand -- why is my weight such an issue, because I was told to put on that weight. When I entered the industry, I was like this lost child. I was a 20 or 21-year-old, not as polished as the 20 or 21-year-olds we have now. (I had) Nothing to do with the Bollywood industry and there I was on a film set with the biggest superstar of the country," Zareen told IANS.
She further added, "When my very first shot happened I didn't even know where the camera was. I was that dumb and naive. When I am so inexperienced and I am working with such experienced people, they give you instructions. I was supposed to look like that and I followed instructions, and then when the film released it backfired on me. From my looks, to my weight to everything, I couldn't understand what I did. It was funny, it was disturbing. There were too many emotions at one time."
When Zareen was asked whether the industry judges an actor on the basis of look, she nodded her head in affirmation saying that a major section of the industry does. "In the beginning it was really difficult because of the comparison, my weight was almost a national issue," she added.
Zareen also said that putting on weight for Veer wrong for some time as she didn't have work. But the one thing that this industry has taught her is that nothing is permanent. She added that perceptions change with every film and nothing should be taken to heart.
Earlier, Zareen had spoken about being rejected from a film for looking the way she does. She was bluntly told about the industry perception that pretty girls cannot act. Though her dance number Character Dheela in Salman Khan's Ready somewhat helped in changing perceptions, she said that people were like, 'she can look like that also. She has lost weight, nice'. Then came Hate Story and people said she is so hot. Still, Zareen was rejected when she tried looking for roles that would give her something meaningful to portray.
The 34-year-old has taken a break from all things related to being glamorous. She was last seen in Hum Bhi Akele Tum Bhi Akele, which recently released on Zee5. She portrayed a character of a lesbian which was something she had never done in her career of over a decade.
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