By Durga Chakravarty
Becoming a target of social media trolls isn't new for Sunny Leone, who got drawn into a controversy earlier this month when filmmaker Ram Gopal Varma wrote a distasteful tweet about her on International Women's Day. But the actress has a smart way to tackle haters: just block them.
Asked if social media trolls and negativity on such platforms affect her, Sunny told IANS over e-mail from Mumbai: "No. Because I have the block button. I don't give two hoots about it. I know my following has been by my side for many years, and I love them for it.
"The haters just get blocked!"
Varma landed himself in hot soup after his controversial comment: "I wish all the women in the world give men as much happiness as Sunny Leone gives."
The comment triggered a storm of protests on Twitter, and even attracted complaints against Varma.
Sunny, a former Indo-Canadian porn star who entered Indian showbiz via a stint in the Bigg Boss 5, a reality TV show in 2012, says she cannot do anything about stereotypical perceptions about her in the industry.
"I can't do anything about stereotypes. That's just how the world works everywhere," she said.
The 35-year-old actress has been part of the Hindi film industry for over five years and has starred in nine films, apart from cameos.
Born to Sikh parents in Canada, her journey began with erotic thriller Jism 2, which paved the way for her to feature in movies like Jackpot, Ek Paheli Leela and Mastizaade.
Is it a conscious decision to choose selected scripts in a year?
"I definitely try to make the right decision based on what's on the table. It's just all about that. My team and myself decide what's best for the brand. Sometimes it's good, and sometimes it's not," said Sunny.
She says "there still is" struggle to find good work.
"Everyone has their own journey and mine is different in its own way," she said.
The actress, who has also featured in duds like One Night Stand and Beiimaan Love, says she is proud of her husband Daniel Weber and their team for their hard work to push her career.
"We have to struggle to make the steps forward. I'm very proud of Daniel and my whole team for the work they have done," she said.
What about the failures?
She does fear them, but says there is "nothing I can do if a film does well or notâ€¦ I can only try my best to do a great job. I want to be better with each film released".
Sunny was last seen on screen in the song Laila Main Laila for the film Raees, where she got an opportunity to work alongside superstar Shah Rukh Khan.
Asked if she is keen to share screen space with Salman Khan and Aamir Khan, Sunny said: "Just like most actors, I always pray to work with great people like them."
Sunny will next be seen in Tera Intezaar, where she will be seen sharing screen space with actor Arbaaz Khan.
Talking about the film, Sunny said: "It's a film story we both like. It's in the romantic thriller space and I hope people like it."
(Durga Chakravarty can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org )