'Script is always a priority'

Nina C George, March 26, 2015, DHNS

'Script is always a priority'

Sharmiela Mandre is never tired of work. She has almost completed shooting for her latest film Kannada project, ‘Mumtaz’. The actress has been in Mumbai for the last nine months shooting for the Bollywood remake of ‘Katha’, which will be her debut in Bollywood. She will be playing the role enacted by Deepti Naval in the original. 

She has acted in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and it was only a matter of time before she accepted an offer from Bollywood. “I have never worked towards bagging a Hindi film. The director for this particular film wanted a new face, so I thought I’d try my luck. I auditioned and gave my screen test. I’d forgotten about it when suddenly I got a call from the crew of ‘Katha’ saying that I was to join them for the shooting. I was both nervous and excited,” says Sharmiela.

She has always believed that her Bollywood debut must offer something substantial. “I think every actor must be passionate about the role he or she is doing. You can’t take up something just to be in the league,” she reasons. About her experience of shooting for ‘Katha’ in Mumbai, Sharmiela says that she was put through a month’s workshop before the shoot started. “I find that everything is well organised in Bollywood.

There’s no confusion. I will also be dubbing for the first time in this film,” she says. Sharmiela has been working hard to perfect her accent and pronunciation in Hindi. “I am looking forward to the release of the movie. I have worked really hard for this character and the director was keen that I get my lisping right, so we could do the shooting only after I got that right,” says Sharmiela.

In ‘Mumtaz’, Sharmiela plays the role of a college-goer. Although it is a love story, the script has been tweaked and the concept of love has been approached in a different way. “It’s not a boy-meets-girl love story and running around trees doesn’t take priority here. Today, most girls are independent, educated and have a job. The story has been written keeping all this in mind,” she adds.

Sharmiela is also listening to a couple of more scripts in Kannada. She is one of those who wants to be remembered for her roles rather than the number of movie projects she has signed. “Script is always a priority before I sign a film. I don’t want to work on regular scripts and I want to take my career more seriously,” she sums up.

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