Desai at the Indian Premiere of The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, 2012
|Born||Tena Babbar Desae
24 February 1987
Bangalore, Karnataka, India
Why should I have to say bye to one thing to do another? I can do lots of things at one time, and as much as I love to do films, I'd love to do ads as well!
Listening to your instincts, while being the easiest, can also be the hardest thing to do.
I have a sensitive skin, so all products I use have aloe vera in them. I wash my face a lot and avoid touching it unnecessarily. I use makeup only when I have to. All products I use have natural ingredients. For me, cotton soaked in rose water and then kept in the freezer for a bit works as a great toner.
'The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel' is a British comedy-drama directed by John Madden. The film is based on the 2004 novel, 'These Foolish Things', by Deborah Moggach.
When accessorizing with chunky jewellery, choose bright colours that will stand out and bring alive your look. Statement pieces in bold colours can take your look to a different level and could even become a point of discussion.
My role models are Madhuri Dixit and Kajol. Both actresses have done a wide variety of roles. That is something I wish to do. On the other hand, I also want to be like a Hugh Jackman or an Angelina Jolie because of the lives they have outside movies. Because of the kind of balance they strike between their work and life outside of it.
I don't compare myself with Freida Pinto. She has come a long way. She does only films in the West. I am open to do both – Indian films and films from the West.
The biggest challenge is to not be affected by praise because a lot of it is not from the heart. Being true to yourself about your strengths and weaknesses, when everyone out there has a strong opinion and wants to give advice, is another challenge.
Most of what I've learnt is too personal or controversial to share, but nevertheless, experiences have helped me understand things better and have been necessary for what my journey in future will be.
Stay positive and happy. Work hard and don't give up hope. Be open to criticism and keep learning. Surround yourself with happy, warm and genuine people.
I will definitely continue to do Bollywood because that is my thing and I can't not do it – I have to do the singing and the dancing because it is so much fun. But I would like to explore my opportunities in the West, so we will have to wait and see.
Always try clothes on before you buy them. Stand, sit, walk and inspect yourself from all angles before you buy it so you don't regret it later. Knowing what it looks like on you is very important, as your body shape must suit the cut of the outfit.
I keep my beauty regimen as natural as possible. I wash my face four times a day. In the beginning of the day, I use an exfoliating cleanser made of besan, turmeric and sandalwood. I drink lots of water and avoid oily food. I use only The Body Shop products on my face, as they use the least amount of chemicals.
The two Hindi movies that I did were not marketed well, and so not many people came to watch the film, hence the audience doesn't know much about me. I am a newcomer, and I cannot sell a film on my own. There has to be a backing in terms of producers.
I am a graduate in business management with specialisation in finance, and I love accounts!
I don't plan, because everything goes against my plans anyways. There's absolutely no point in planning anything. I'm just enjoying the moment. I'm meeting with a whole lot of people – casting directors, directors, agents. I have things going on everywhere, but I have no solid plans.
I attend dance class every alternate day, and it works like a cardio workout for me. I also do weight training in the gym every alternate day.
I am greedy for both Hollywood and Bollywood. For me, Bollywood is not new, as it is something that I grow up on… I know the plot… stories and characters that are written and made. I haven't got the right opportunity to show my work in Bollywood.
If it's old school friends that my parents know, then I can stay out till late. But if they don't know them, they want me home by 9 P.M. If I have work, then I don't have a deadline. I don't argue with them. That's how I have been raised, and I'm happy with it.
Judi Dench is incredible. She takes acting to another level. She is a thorough professional. She is always smiling and cheerful. She painstakingly rehearses with co-stars and allows you to be natural.
Depending on your figure, you may use clothes and colours to highlight your assets or otherwise. Darker shades always make you look slimmer while bright colours or prints can highlight your figure. Using colours to enhance your look is the easiest and smartest way to play with your figure.
The role and the script are not the only factor to chose or do a film, but the names associated with the project also matters.
Layering is always a great way to look different and to keep your look younger. Basic tees, vest tops, jackets, leggings, shrugs, etc, can be mixed up to add spunk, variety and colour to your look. A good sense of mix 'n' match is required to make this look work.
My parents are really quite strict, so I have to be home at a certain time – even now, at the age of 25.
I think 'Slumdog' was probably the first big film that happened in India, but even that seemed like a one-off thing.
My style statement is fun and flirty. My wardrobe must-haves are a good dress that can be styled differently, a good pair of jeans, and a few nice tops.
I want to work in a bank, definitely. Hopefully, my acting career will go well. But if it doesn't, I go to a bank. If it does, then even at the age of 40, I will still go to a bank, but I have to work in a bank, because I'm really fond of taxation and accounts and investments and all of that. So I will do it. At some point, I will, yes.
I work out for an hour and a half every day, alternating between cardio and weights. I also do yoga for an hour every alternate day and swim every other day.
Major differences in projects happen due to budget, director's styles, and genre of script, not industry.
Everyone goes on about how Bombay is so similar to New York, so I had see what the big deal was. The bustling crowds are the same, but it's a lot quieter, it's a lot cleaner, and it's not humid. I think the energy is very similar to Bombay.