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Big Girls Don’t Cry: ‘Poster Girl Of 90s’ Pooja Bhatt Opens Up On Being Rebel With A Cause | People News

New Delhi: The poster girl of the 90’s, Pooja Bhatt was the proverbial rebel with a cause. 35 years later, she plays the cool disciplinarian in Nitya Verma’s coming-of-age series, Big Girls Don’t Cry. So what would the 52-year-old Pooja say to the 17-year-old who made her debut in Bollywood? 

“Exactly, the same thing, I said to the students, she laughed huskily. Though she adds “I was perpetually in trouble in school for my hair that would fall in front of my eyes. But, what I liked about my character is she knows when to push the students and pulls back as well, letting them decide for themselves,”

However, she recounts being encouraged to speak her mind in school, “My teachers made me realise it’s best to address the elephant in the room, say what’s in your heart. However, when I joined the film industry I was told, you want to make it big keep your opinions to yourself.”

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Pooja who made a debut in “Daddy”, a heart-rending narrative between a father and daughter, fanned the flames of fame at just 19, with the mega-hit “Dil Hai Ki Manta Nahi”. The actor who had her fair share of hits and misses, says she has constantly had to deal with the industry’s myopic worldview. 

“I don’t look back, because I don’t have the time. But, I remember when we were dubbing Daddy, there was this discussion about whether my voice should be retained or not. Since  I didn’t have that girly voice, since there is a husk in my voice. A senior sound recordist said, let’s replace it, but my father( Mahesh Bhatt) said no, either people accept her for what she is or they reject her. And that was my first lesson. I think that’s the only thing that seen me through”.

Pooja who quit acting at 26, and took to production and direction, made her return to acting after 21 years with Bombay Begums in 2021. She praises director’s Alankrita Srivastav and Nitya Mehra, for letting her play her age.

“It’s such a relief to not be told to Botox, add fillers and knock off a pound or two. I cannot live up to the Dil Hai Ki Manta Ha Nahi Girl. I was so glad when I was told we need a flesh and blood character.”

Pooja had recently commented that her one-year-old niece Raha Kapoor was the smartest of all the Bhatt girls, someone who could teach them all a thing or two. So, what kind of an aunt is she to Raha? “I am like my character Amita Verma from the show, who is quite forward and a cool cat,” she responds heartily.

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