WEB DESK: On her journey to international fame, Bollywood actress Priyanka Chopra faced many hurdles. In an interview with The Guardian, she reminisced about the earlier years she had spent in the US.
“I’m not even Indian-American, I’m Indian-Indian. Everybody expected me to have henna and a nose pin and talk in an accent like Apu from The Simpsons,” Priyanka said.
“I was the only Indian kid in my school in Iowa. Later I lived in Queens, New York and Newton, Massachusetts, and in high school I was bullied really badly,” said PeeCee.
Children called her “brownie” and “curry” and would tell her to go back to her own country. “It was supremely scary,” she added. “I would avoid going to the cafeteria and eat in the bathroom instead.
Now that she is a mega star, she explained that she was not sure if America was ready to seea brown woman in a lead of a series. She also said that when the producers of Quantico approached her, she told them to cast her for her skills, not because she was a woman of color.
When her song In My City was used as the theme for Thursday Night Football in 2013, NFL fans were enraged and emailed the league asking, “Who is this Arab terrorist?”
“I find it really funny that people have such primitive thinking,” Chopra noted. “I called them out. I said: ‘Why is every Arab person a terrorist, and why am I an Arab terrorist just because I am brown?’”
“I wanted to be cast as an actor on merit as being the best person for the job. I didn’t want to be a stereotype of what an Indian girl should be. I wanted to be what I personify in my Indian movies: independent, sexy, good at my job and really smart.” She put this condition forward when she accepted to be a part of Quantico.
Having such positive feedback from all over the world over her thriller TV series, she is much more confident and comfortable in working in the Hollywood now.
Her drive and determination to win is what keeps this star going – ”I just like being the best. I hate being a loser. So I just have to keep winning.”
Priyanka will feature onscreen in Jai Gangajal which releases today (March 4). The Quantico actress is currently engaged in the shoot of her Hollywood debut film Baywatch alongside Dwayne Johnson.
Baywatch will release on May 19 next year.