Happy with her "successful life" and "achievements", Tabu takes pride in saying that as a Bollywood actress she deftly balanced mainstream and art movies but admits "missing" being part of masala movies. She says that she would like to do a "comedy" and won't mind teaming up with David Dhawan.
The actress, who will turn 41 next month, described her over two-decade journey in showbiz as satisfactory.
"A lot has been achieved. I believe my life is a success story. I am fortunate enough to have achieved everything. I never thought I would be an actress; so, each and every achievement looks big to me. It's been a long journey. It's great to see I have made something out of myself," she said.
If she entertained Hindi-speaking fans with Hera Pheri and Biwi No. 1, she had a grip over Telugu audiences with potboilers like Ninne Pelladatha and Coolie No. 1.
"I had a great time doing Bollywood and Telugu films and it's been an interesting journey. I did only masala films down south and I really miss doing masala films. I love song and dance films in Bollywood. I love it and I miss it," Tabu said.
Asked what kept her away from such films, she said she didn't want to be typecast.
"Once you do such films, people start thinking: 'Let's cast her in the same kind of films'. Then people will do what easily comes to them. They will say: 'She looks good in this kind of role; so take her in this film'. Once it works for you, people will use it as a formula. I can't keep doing that, I cannot. I have to do something from which I get something," Tabu said.
If she did mainstream films in Bollywood like Chachi 420 and Saajan Chale Sasural, she also featured in offbeat films Machis, Astitva, Maqbool, Chandni Bar and Cheeni Kum, among others.
Tabu says she has managed to strike a balance between the two, adding: "I don't think I am branded as an offbeat actress because people know the journey that I have made. When I did Astitva, I also did Hera Pheri. When I did Maachis, I also did Biwi No 1. So personally I have maintained the balance very well."
She will be next seen in Ang Lee's Life of Pi, releasing on November 23, and is also doing Bijoy Nambiar's David.
The choosy and reclusive actress is waiting for better scripts to come her way. "I am not taking up anything that is coming to me. In David, it's a small cameo and I have done it just for the heck of it. I am not taking up anything because I don't like everything that's coming to me."
After being part of critically acclaimed films like Chandni Bar and Namesake, she now wants to work with David Dhawan, known for his light-hearted fun films.
"Of course, there is an aspiration to work with interesting people and established people. I want to work with David Dhawan. I would love to do comedy," Tabu said.
(Uma Ramasubramanian can be contacted at email@example.com)