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Language no barrier! Nargis Fakhri is open to doing any roles – Beyond Bollywood

The American import acknowledges that her Hindi will always be second to English, but she is not limiting herself to any language.

Nargis Fakhri at Shiv Shastri Balboa [2023] trailer launch on 31 January in Mumbai.

By Mayur Lookhar

Ethereal beauty Nargis Fakhri came like a breath of air in Imtiaz Ali’s Rockstar [2011]. The American actor, who is born to a Pakistani father and a Czech mother, has had a stop start career in Hindi cinema. Post Rockstar, she did few films, but could never really establish herself in mainstream cinema.

Fakhri, however, did make a mark in films like Madras Café [2013], and a few years ago, she gave a respectable performance in the lowkey film 5 Weddings [2018]. The common thing to these films is how Fakhri looked more comfortable in playing a largely English-speaking character. She will soon be seen in the Anupam Kher-starrer Shiv Shastri Balboa [2023], a film that is based in America and where here character appears to be largely speaking in English.

Is that the way forward for the American beauty to make a mark in Bollywood?

I’m obviously open to anything and everything. Of course, English is the first language, and I’m at ease with English. Thank you for noticing that. But I’m open to any role. As an actor, we have to work hard. It is not an easy job. If you are willing to work hard, work on the role, you can achieve anything,” Fakhri said at the trailer launch of Shiv Shastri Balboa.

We further asked her if Hindi remains her biggest challenge?

The American humbly replied, “I wasn’t born here, I wasn’t raised in Hindi. So, it will always be slightly [shakes her head] not like English.”

In another remarkable thing, Fakhri didn’t shy from saying that she was playing a supporting role in this film. Fakhri, though, was delighted to work with seasoned actors like Kher and Neena Gupta.

“It was very interesting because these two [Kher, Gupta] are the main [characters]. Having this (her) role, being a supporting actor is … it was a joy. It is something different for me. It’s a different kind of movie, very realistic. I loved the way it was shot, written, all the acting is so real. Whether big or small, I enjoyed this role a lot. Our [Sharib Hashmi and her character] support was really important. I think we help to bring a lot of spice, extra spice.”

Shiv Shastri Balboa [2023] is set to be released in theatres on 10 February.

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