Ah, Slumdog Millionaire. How many of you had heard of Freida Pinto before that? I certainly hadn’t, and now I can’t go two steps without bumping into she of the toothy smile. One day, she’s on the cover of Vogue. Another day, I catch her snuggling up to Slumdog co-star Dev Patel in Israel, and on a third, I have to read about how she may be the next Bond girl after already having bagged a Woody Allen project.
Granted, she isn’t really hot property in India yet. I mean, producers and directors aren’t exactly queuing up at her doorstep with film offers, and the endorsements circuit has been curiously indifferent to her global renown. I can’t remember a single Indian ad that she has featured in, can you?
Why is this? Are we so jealous of her fame and fortune that we can’t look beyond them? “What has she done to deserve this?” is a cry I often hear among friends. “She had only a 10-minute role in the film. And look at how opportunistic she is, dumping her fianceé for that Dev Patel.”
The fianceé in question, Rohan Antao, lost no time in tomtomming his misery to the world, the loser. And though there were reports of friends ganging up on Freida for the way in which she treated Antao, it appears not to have affected her global triumphal march at all.
How? That is also a question I often hear. How is this ordinary looking girl and decidedly ordinary actress the toast of international moviegoers? How does Vogue name her as the world’s best dressed woman? Why do Indian designers moan when she avoids wearing their creations to the numerous red carpets she is seen on?
Well, given the entourage of international stylists and designers working on her round the clock, Freida is no longer ordinary looking, though there is a decided element of ‘accidental sexiness’ about her. Now if only I could pinpoint the reason why my friends still find her unworthy of all the attention she’s getting… and why I can’t shake off the sneaking suspicion that she’s one very, very, lucky lady.