Jacqueline Fernandez is proof of the fact that if you are warm from the inside, you are stunningly beautiful outside.
From being Aladin’s dreamgirl in Sujoy Ghosh’s underestimated film to dangling her Chittiyaan Kalaayiaan on the screen, Jackie has come a long way. The perfect exotic beauty, Jackie has a Malaysian mother and a Sri Lankan father and relies on Indian health practices for holistic beauty. Despite owing her fame to a beauty pageant win, Jackie isn’t too fond of them. “I know that a beauty pageant – and winning it – is every girl’s dream, but when you get there you realize that it’s not just about looking good and feeling glamorous. It does groom you – in every way possible – dressing, style, makeup, conduct and you also meet so many people. But that is not all that a pageant is about. I feel a pageant makes you learn so much about the world while you discover yourself,” she says, adding that fact that she prefers natural beauty over one that relies on makeup. “Real beauty to me is natural. You can’t get more beautiful than a natural, clean-looking face. And no matter how amazing your makeup is or how much plastic surgery you’ve done, there is nothing more beautiful than a face that glows from within,” declares Jackie.
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The migration from her country, Sri Lanka, is not something the actress planned for. “It was never planned! It was literally something that landed in my lap. I actually knew some people from Sri Lanka who had set up an agency in India. They called me for various modelling assignments and fashion shows. That is when I realised this may be my career too! Touchwood, I am doing well and getting encouraged,” says she. Aladin landing in her lap was a tremendous boost for her. ” Within the first month of being in India, I met the Aladin crew and auditioned for it. Wonder of wonders, I got the role ad thought I must grab it with both hands,” says Jacqueline.
In fact, the actress has no qualms in being candid about not having tried hard to land a role in a Bollywood film, and says, ” The time I got ‘Aladin’, I was not having any expectations and I actually didn’t care much. I was just blindly accepting work – I knew I will have to do that, when I got this super chance. I do pine for things and sometimes sound and behave desperate, but with time I am learning to be patient. I allow time, life and destiny to take their own course. It is actually better if things work out for you naturally.”
Despite the hard work, critics panned her debut film. How did she take the failure? “Well I did not look at it as a failure to be honest. I never expected myself to land up in films – so that in itself was a success for me. It was a perfect launch. As Jasmine, I got the opportunity to share screen space with Mr Bachchan. It was great exposure. The only thing that went against me was the combination of being a newcomer, and a foreigner. My real struggle started after Aladin,” says Jacqueline.
Now, after being part of films such as Murder 2, Race 2 and Kick, that joined the Rs 100 crore league, Jackie still does not feel she has arrived. “That is not possible. Despite being a film that took a lot of effort, Roy didn’t do well. So success in films is ephemeral – it is something the definition of which changes every Friday. Having to get your films do well is really important, that is what I started learning after the ‘Murder 2’ success. It kind of developed me as an actress in the industry I feel. ‘Race 2’ was a film that belonged to all the stars. But yes, ‘Kick’ has definitely upped my confidence and boosted a sense of self-integrity in me. I got the film just at the right time because had ‘Kick’ not come across, I don’t know how long I would have taken to consider myself as an actress,” she says, rather philosophically.
The actress is now looking forward to her next film, Brother, and says, “I will be playing a mother in this film and I have turned very emotional for and during the shoot. My parents have really brought us up with great care. All the sacrifices my parents did for all of us are remarkable. I have seen my mom trying to give her best to all her kids. I remember she has also brought the lovely dogs for us while we were away studying in college. I have seen her struggle while bringing us up. I acknowledge her pains and efforts and I tried to bring that experience into this role.”