'I have learnt to be more patient'

'I have learnt to be more patient'

Raised in  New Zealand  for most part of her life, Latha Hegde never really set out to be an actor.  

Armed with post-graduate degrees in management and marketing, Latha always saw for herself an academically-driven future till her participation in a beauty pageant, during her college days. This put her on the course to a career in film industry. Latha, who is set for the release of her Sandalwood debut 'Athiratha', speaks to  Nina C George about her entry in films.

Tell us about your transition from being a management student to an actor.
I was always academically-inclined. But things changed when my friend and I decided to participate in a beauty pageant in New Zealand. We didn't win but my pictures caught the attention of filmmakers in India. I wasn't keen at first but my parents encouraged me to give films a shot. I made my debut in Telugu and worked in a Tamil film before entering the Kannada film industry.      

What made you accept 'Athiratha'?

'Athiratha' is directed by Mahesh Babu who also happens to be one of my favourite directors. I watched one of his earlier films called 'Arasu' and was impressed with it. So when I got a call from him, I knew that it was no ordinary film and that my character would definitely be a strong one.

What's your role in the film?

I play an NRI journalist. I was able to deliver exactly what the director expected of me. My character required me to have a quirky attitude and speak not-so-perfect Kannada along with the characteristics of someone who has been raised abroad. I had it all.

On working with Chetan…

Chetan is my favourite co-star. We shared the same wavelength on a host of issues. He too plays a journalist. He would not only help me with my scenes but also give me an insight into the political and social culture of India.  

Any lessons learnt after joining the Kannada crew?

The people here are helpful and very encouraging. I have learnt to be more patient after working here.  

Your Tamil debut project is with Suhasini Mani Ratnam. Tell us about it.

The project has Suhasini, Radhika Sharath Kumar, Kushboo and Urvashi. I play Suhasini's daughter in the film. She is a wonderful person. She and I bonded very well. Since I was new to the industry, she made sure that I didn't feel out
of place.

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