"Live life truthfully and unabashedly," Samantha Ruth Prabhu on her birthday

"I am ushering in my birthday with the 'Citadel' team. I love them; they're like my family," Prabhu says

Samantha Ruth Prabhu (photo: Twitter)
Samantha Ruth Prabhu (photo: Twitter)

Subhash K Jha

This birthday is a working day for you. Is that the way you like it?

Yeah, this is the way I like it. What I love to do is act. I'd rather be doing what I love on my birthday. I've never been the sort who throws big parties—never been that way. If I am not shooting on my birthday, it'd be a small, intimate family thing.

How are you ushering in your birthday otherwise?

I am ushering in my birthday with the Citadel team. I love them—they're like my family. So I’m definitely getting that family feeling on my birthday.  We are in a wonderful place. And we are shooting something awesome. I think this is the best way to celebrate.

Tell me about your early childhood memories of your birthdays—the cakes, the balloons, the parties...

I've two elder brothers. Growing up, there was a lot of cake, yes. We always fought for cake. I remember fighting with my elder brothers for cake on our birthdays.

The last two years have not been easy on you. How have you coped with all the setbacks?

I am okay. I am at a point in my life where it can only get better [laughs mirthlessly]. As you said, there have been scary setbacks. So I think the only way forward  is… up!

You have a massive fan following, and yet there is a section that is constantly attacking you. How do you manage not to let the vitiated sections get to you?

Yes, I am blessed to have so many supporters. They love me. I think the hate is a part of the deal. You can’t have just the love. The roses have to come with thorns. There are people out there who disagree with and disapprove of everything I do. It is natural in a high-profile profession like mine. If I have chosen to be an actor, I am kind of signing my life off to those who love and hate in equal measure.

You have to keep shifting base between both Hyderabad and Mumbai for work. Does it ever feel like you don't get to even unpack your suitcase?

I am blessed to be working with great teams. I am blessed to now have a wider reach and bigger opportunities. I am very happy with the quality of work that I am getting. Every day, I enjoy my work because it is enriching. You know, the kind of parts that are coming to me pose new challenges for me. And I’m enjoying that. I enjoy challenges. I get bored easily. I have my hands full with challenges every single day. It's a good place to be. I am looking forward to the release of The Citadel and Kushi.

How do you adapt to the different geopolitical work cultures of these different spaces?

I think I go where a good script and character invite me. I think these are the only criteria for selection. The language no longer matters. Because of all that has happened in the recent past, I've become even more picky about the work I do. I will be doing very selected projects. I will take it a lot slower now than I used to.

Considering your past disillusionments, are you open to finding love again in the future?

I don’t want to be pessimistic or negative about anything in life. Whatever has to happen, will happen. I don’t think anyone has control over destiny. I didn't have any control over the things that happened in my life. So I wouldn't say a vehement no [to love]. I’d just say, que sera, sera [whatever will be, will be].

To all the women and girls who look up to you, what would be your advice and message?

Life is too short to live it for others. Ask yourself who the real 'you' is, and live that life truthfully and unabashedly. That's my advice.

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