How did it happen?
I was three months old when I made my debut in films. Savitri and my mother were friends and the former requested that they need a baby for a song featuring Raja Babu in Bharya. I was placed in a cradle and there was a song on me. Then I was featured in one song when I was one-and-half year old for Jeevanatarangalu and became a full-fledged actor by the time I was three. My dad passed away and I had to earn for the family. People say I speak fluent English. I've never been to school, I learnt watching news bulletins on Doordarshan. To make it in life one needs to be honest, confident and blessed. While my sisters returned from school and cribbed about homework, I ate chocolates and enjoyed shooting. I had an overlapping tooth, which people said would bring in good luck for me; well, I got film opportunities.
How was the experience?
My mother came from a well-to-do family but my dad made her a pauper with his drinking habit. She loved him and often would cry. I was her pet. I remember sleeping on her chest and hear her cry while she rocked on the easy chair. I was five-and-a half years old then. Later I was deluged with films. Kaliyuga Vanavasulu, Gorintaaku, Sitamahalakshmi, Mantrigadi Viyyankudu, Subhalekha made me popular. My mum is still with me, her blessings got me prosperity, a fabulous husband and son, many homes in Bangalore and Chennai.
How did life change after that?
I had to protect myself when I became a heroine. I didn't want to do certain things to get a role; when you are greedy, you get tempted but I didn't care a pin. The industry had called me back today, I'm more respected. When I look back, I think it's been a clean slate. I never crossed my limits. Today I'm on the top of the world, I don't go asking for roles but the same time I don't refuse either if it comes my way. I'm now playing the role of Trisha's motherin an Ajith-starrer, being directed by Venkata Prabhu of Goa fame.